High School Activities

Middle School Activities

Encourage critical thinking and group problem solving while making connections across the curriculum.

High School Activities

Go more in-depth on specific issues with information on global trends and national/international policies.

School Wide Events

Involve your entire grade or the whole school in real-world simulations and fun contests.

Lessons for grades 9 – 12 are appropriate for a number of courses including Biology, Environmental Science (Honors, AP, IB), World History, Economics, AP Human Geography, and Global Studies. Topics covered include demographic differences worldwide, poverty and wealth distribution, global public health trends, community/societal decision making, climate change, gender equity, social justice, and human impacts on specific ecosystems. Download the free lessons below to actively engage your students in these timely issues.


High School Lesson Plans

P = Population Dynamics   E= Environmental Connections    S=Societal Connections


Moving Messages – Pop Videos (E, S)

Students develop a persuasive message by writing, filming and editing a video relating world population of 7 billion to one other global challenge.

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Code Blue: Endangered Oceans (E)

As the instructor reads a story about the history of the world’s oceans, students act as characters adding and removing items based on real-world events.

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Everything is Connected (E, S)

Students identify ways that many factors in human society and the natural environment are interdependent by creating a concept map in cooperative learning groups.

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7 Billion: Where do you Stand? (E, S)

Students articulate their thoughts about ethical issues related to a population of over seven billion and consider the opinions of their classmates.

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Exploring the Timeline (P, E, S)

Students analyze the timeline on the A Quick Trip to 7.6 Billion to answer questions and complete a graphic organizer, exploring how past events have contributed to our current population size and resource use.

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Infographic Scavenger Hunt (E, S)

Through collaborative analysis of visual data (infographics) found on the A Quick Trip to 7.6 Billion poster, students investigate today’s demographics and resource use and how we can reduce future environmental impacts.

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World Population Video (P, E)

Students watch World Population to see a graphic simulation of human population growth over time. Following the film, students answer questions about why population size has changed, where these changes occurred, and what factors may have contributed to these changes.

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Generating Heat (E)

Students graph carbon dioxide emissions and population growth over time and discuss trends they observe.

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Pop Quiz (P)

A pre-test/post-test quiz designed to give students an overview of world population trends and the consequences of these trends.

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Food for Thought (S)

Acting as residents of five major world regions, students compare various statistics that affect people’s health and well-being.

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Report Card for the Planet (E, S)

Using the A Quick Trip to 7.6 Billion poster, students complete a “report card” to determine whether progress has been made in key indicators of human well-being and environmental health over the past 200 years, and then evaluate what these changes mean.

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A Girl’s Life (S)

Students read an article about women’s status in less developed countries and watch/listen to several online photo essays and videos of women around the world. They discuss what they have learned and extend their learning with research, persuasive essays and/or book reports.

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Calculating 7 Billion (P)

Through cooperative learning activities and a class demonstration, students work through problems to visualize large numbers and use technology to graph population growth trends to make estimates about future growth.

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Development in Motion (S)

Using the “trendalyzer” program from www.gapminder.org, students construct and interpret dynamic graphs and discuss differences in life expectancy, fertility rates, health, economics, and total population among several different countries.

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Background Reading

The People Connection

High school reading provides an overview of world population history, current demographic trends, migration, and the concept of carrying capacity.

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Want More?

The World of 7 Billion lesson plans found here are only a piece of the larger Population Education curriculum library.