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Lesson #2 of Green Spaces Unit

Database Provider


Physical Geography


3rd, 4th, 5th


Social Studies, Geography


45 minutes

Regional Focus



Google Docs, Google Slides


This lesson plan is licensed under Creative Commons.

Creative Commons License

Disappearing Green Spaces & Environmental Justice (Green Spaces #2)

Created By Teachers:
Last Updated:
Apr 18, 2024
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This lesson explores the benefits of green spaces, how green spaces are disappearing, and how the disappearance of green spaces relates to environmental justice. 

Step 1 - Inquire: Teacher introduces the idea of goods and services. Students brainstorm ideas on how green spaces provide goods and services.

Step 2 - Investigate: Students watch a video on the disappearance of green spaces around the world. Students discuss how this makes them feel. Finally, students watch a video of Jaysa Hunter-Mellers, an environmental activist.

Step 3 - Inspire: Students look at maps to understand that green spaces are not distributed equally in all communities. After learning more about environmental justice, students have the option to write a reflection, draw or write a story, or make a list of ways that green spaces provide goods and services to their community.

Accompanying Teaching Materials
Teaching Tips


  • Students will better understand deforestation utilizing Google Earth.
  • Students learn how urban tree cover disproportionately benefits wealthier communities.
  • This lesson uplifts student voices and creates student agency to make the world better.

Additional Prerequisites

  • This is lesson 2 of 6 in our 3rd-5th grade Green Spaces unit.
  • Knowledge of the terms goods and services would be helpful prior to this lesson.


  • Students are able to select one of three options in the Inspire section of this lesson.
  • Outgoing students can share their mini-comics or stories with the class when they are finished.
  • Teachers can support students who feel motivated to make changes in their schools or communities. Any project like this can extend far beyond this lesson.
Scientist Notes

This lesson lets students understand the relationship between disappearing green spaces and environmental justice in their community. The lesson is elementary, suitable for classroom, use and has no scientific misconceptions. All materials are thoroughly sourced and have passed our science review.


Primary Standard

  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Geography
      • D2.Geo.2.3-5 Use maps, satellite images, photographs, and other representations to explain relationships between the locations of places and regions and their environmental characteristics.
Green Spaces Unit Lesson Plans


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