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6th, 7th, 8th


Social Studies, Geography

Resource Types

  • Activity - Classroom, 60 minutes
  • Worksheets
  • Lesson Plans

Regional Focus




How Climate Change Affects People Differently

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  • This is a 60-minute activity in which students read five short stories from people around the world to understand how the impact of climate change depends on age, gender, geography, and wealth. 
  • Students are introduced to the concept of vulnerability, discuss the factors that make people vulnerable to climate change, and learn ways to help them better adapt to these changes. 

Teaching Tips


  • This resource includes teacher instructions, the student handout, and links to important background information.
  • Through this activity, students will use their creativity and communication skills to think about solutions to help people better adapt to climate change.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students need to be familiar with the basics of climate change and its impacts on humans.
  • Teachers can review the resources linked under the "Sources" section for additional context.


  • Depending on the reading ability of the class, students can be grouped to include readers of different levels.
  • Students can work in groups to find solutions for each factor: age, wealth, etc.
  • The teacher can divide the class into groups and assign one story to each group. Groups can read the story, discuss it, and present their conclusions to the class.
  • As part of the social studies or geography lesson, students can make a chart showing the different factors and how climate change affects people differently.
Scientist Notes
This resource aims to help students understand that where a person lives, how old they are, what gender they are, and how much money they have are all large factors in determining how they will be able to handle the impacts of climate change. More specifically, they will learn how some of the poorest people in the world will face some of the worst impacts of climate change. The sources provided for this activity are exceptional. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Geography
      • D2.Geo.4.6-8 Explain how cultural patterns and economic decisions influence environments and the daily lives of people in both nearby and distant places.
      • D2.Geo.10.6-8 Analyze the ways in which cultural and environmental characteristics vary among various regions of the world.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: Informational Text (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.7.10 By the end of the year, read and comprehend literary nonfiction in the grades 6-8 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.6.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 6 topics, texts, and issues, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
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