What's the best way to prepare your students for the Bee? Here are some activities and lessons from National Geographic Education that can help your students learn more about topic areas that frequently appear in Bee questions
Students learn how to use a geographic perspective by asking where and what as they explore the concepts of location and place with their classroom and school.
Students watch a video and create maps to understand Henry Hudson's goals and routes, and the results of his exploration voyages.
Students use maps to understand westward expansion, its impact on different groups of people, and think about the long term impact of westward expansion.
Students learn the components of a watershed, identify examples of point and nonpoint source pollution, and then build a 3-D watershed model.
Coast redwoods tower over California state park.
Illinois’s Shawnee National Forest is famous for its Snake Road.
Students gather their ideas about the land and peoples of Europe. They map and create lists of things they know about Europe and generate questions they have about the land and peoples of Europe.
Students are introduced to the major language and religious groups of Europe. They explore how those groups align with and/or cross country borders.
Students discuss the physical features of the British Isles and reasons an island might split into several countries. They compare maps of language and religious groups to political maps of the United Kingdom and Ireland, and read and answer questions about languages and religions of the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Satellite Image. Oh, say, can you sea?
Use this unit to explore European physical and cultural landscapes with your middle school students. This series of teacher-tested lessons will have your students use maps to think about how borders intersect physical and human geographical features, and how those intersections can lead to cooperation and/or conflict.
Students research four additional examples of physical geography and borders. They explore how mountains, oceans, and islands create physical barriers that affect the country borders in Europe.
Students research four additional examples of human geography and borders. They explore how language, culture, and religious differences affect country borders in Europe.
Students examine a case study of how physical features can interact with country borders to cause conflict. In this case, two countries agreed to work together to build a series of dams on the Danube River, but problems kept the project from being completed, and the conflict continues over 40 years later.
Due to very low levels of oxygen at shallow depths, Black Sea shipwrecks are well preserved when compared to other Mediterranean wrecks from the same time period. Oceanographers and maritime archaeologists look to the waters of the Black Sea for shipwrecks that can be used to uncover the history and culture of ancient civilizations throughout the region.
This article describes the history of music development in Afghanistan, defines what music means in the country, and discusses different types of traditinal and modern music forms and instruments.
The Ganges flows more than 2,500 kilometers (1,553 miles) before reaching the Bay of Bengal. Two of its main tributaries, the Alaknanda (muddy in the picture) and Bhāgīrathi (blue in the picture) meet Devprayag, in Uttarakhand, India.
An ethnolinguistic map of showing different language and cultural groups across Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Without cleaner energy, China’s growth is unsustainable. Some say it’s turning from the “factory of the world” to the planet’s “cleantech lab.”
Contemporary culture has traditional roots.
This segment blends the faces of modern day Maya in the Yucatan with recreation actors in ancient Maya costumes, and teaches a final lesson about Mayan "collapse". The Maya are still in the Yucatan. It's just that their existence has changed.
The tiny monarch butterfly makes one of nature's most amazing migrations.
How marine protected areas help sustain communities and protect ocean life
At noon on November 18, 1883, American and Canadian railroads instituted a system of "standard time," creating the North American time zones.
Students research political, physical, and cultural features of their own state or district and work collaboratively to create a state tourism map.
Students investigate issues of energy use in the Americas that are related to energy consumption, carbon emissions, and population size. They map and graph the information and then analyze it.
Students identify major languages spoken in the Americas, map them, and discuss the relationship between the distribution of languages and the colonial history of the countries.
Students compare several maps to explore relationships between high and low population density, transportation corridors, climate, and land cover in the United States.
Students explore the relationships between rivers and early settlements in the United States. They select a major river of the Americas, research it, and write a story from the river’s point of view.
The proposed Pucallpa – Cruzeiro do Sul will connect the Amazon’s interior to urban centers and export markets in Peru and Brazil. However, critics are worried that the road will also create new opportunities for illegal logging and infringe on the territory of indigenous communities and wildlife.
Students explore a real-world social issue of building a road in the Amazon. Students investigate the benefits this road could offer to the communities along the Brazil-Peru corridor and weigh this against the potential threats to the ecosystem and indigenous peoples.
Encyclopedic entry. South America is a continent of extremes. It is home to the world's largest river (the Amazon) as well as the world's driest place (the Atacama Desert).
Students compare objects that would have been aboard a 17th century ship with modern counterparts and match each object to its correct time period. They describe conditions aboard a 17th century ship and a ship today.
Students learn about three scenarios that involve heavy construction in the Amazon rain forest. They read case scenarios that describe what proponents and critics say about each scenario. Students use the MapMaker Interactive to pinpoint the locations of the construction projects and conduct research to develop a position statement on whether or not construction should occur.
Students use a decision-making process to explore the complex nature of real-world environmental conflicts and how they get resolved. Students will examine the geographical, cultural, and political context of the social issue within this case study, identify the stakeholders and their roles and impact, and map out the intended and unintended consequences of the decision that was made.
On November 24, 1974, fossils of one of the oldest known human ancestors, an Australopithecus afarensis specimen nicknamed “Lucy,” were discovered in Hadar, Ethiopia.
This collection of resources includes interactive mapping tools that will allow educators and learners to delve deeper into a geographic perspective of Africa and the Great Lakes region.
Students use multimedia resources and a community web to characterize and describe the environment, organisms, and feeding relationships of the African savanna ecosystem.
Students read a National Geographic Education article, “Big Cats’ Big Problem,” and identify the threats to big cat populations and how the National Geographic Big Cats Initiative is working to address those threats.
On May 13, 1787, the “First Fleet” of military leaders, sailors, and convicts set sail from Portsmouth, England, to found the first European colony in Australia, Botany Bay.
An Australian spider sinks its chelicerae in.
On February 7, 2009, the “Black Saturday Bushfires” became the worst natural disaster in Australia’s history.
On October 26, 1985, the Australian government returned ownership of Uluru, also known as Ayers Rock, to the Pitjantjatjara, Aboriginal Australians who traditionally lived in the area.
Students use photos and information about Australia’s Shark Bay to draw and label a simple food web. Then they identify which animal in the ecosystem is a keystone species.
Students identify cause-and-effect relationships between sugar cane production and the health of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.
Students use an interactive map to analyze the patterns of migration across the globe and discuss the push and pull factors that cause people to migrate.
Students learn about UNESCO World Heritage sites and use pictures and clues to identify the locations of the sites on a large map. They use geographic coordinates to refine the locations of the sites and consider how geographic coordinates are part of a helpful system of location.
Activity. Students survey population data and make observations about changes in urban population over time. Then they map and graph the data.
Students discuss the geography of the ocean and explore how the ocean has been categorized in the past and today.
Students investigate the interconnectedness of the ocean and Earth's physical and human systems through videos, discussions, writing, and mapping. They make personal connections to their own lives and are introduced to the concept of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).
Students explore Marine Protected Areas on an interactive map and compare and contrast three case studies. They learn how the MPA classification system works in the United States, apply that system to example scenarios, and create case studies of their own.
Students learn about three examples of human impacts on marine life: migration patterns and shipping, algal blooms and water chemistry, and marine debris. Some of these impacts are due to human activity in the ocean, and some impacts on the ocean are due to human activity on land.
Students build on their knowledge of individual impacts on the ocean to see how the whole system can react to threats and changes. They examine ways in which human actions throw marine ecosystems out of balance, explore the concept of how impacts can build, and review their understandings of ecosystem dynamics.
A rain forest is an area of tall trees and a high amount of rainfall.
Students select and map an area. Then they practice finding direction, determining scale, and identifying natural and human features.
An invasive species is an organism that is not indigenous, or native, to a particular area. Invasive species can cause great economic and environmental harm to the new area.