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Activity Overview

Some of the most useful natural resources from the Southwest region are copper, sliver, iron, coal, and oil. The Southwest is the leading region in the raising of beef cattle and sheep. For this activity, students will create a 3-5 cell spider map that illustrates different natural resources from the Southwest. Spider maps are an excellent tool to help students organize facts in a systematic and visual manner. To differentiate, teachers may choose to give the students a certain number of cells to create, or have the students choose between 3, 4, and 5 cells.

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Activity", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)

Due Date:

Objective: Create a 3-5 cell spider map explaining the natural resources of the Southwest.

Student Instructions:

  1. Click “Start Assignment”.
  2. Write a natural resource in each heading.
  3. Create an illustration that represents each heading using appropriate scenes, characters, and items.
  4. Write a short summary of each heading/natural resource in the space below the illustration.

Lesson Plan Reference

Switch to: Common CoreArizonaCaliforniaColoradoFloridaGeorgiaIowaKansasMarylandMassachusettsNebraskaNew JerseyNew YorkNorth CarolinaOhioOklahomaPennsylvaniaTexasUtah


(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)

Used with US States General Information Web
Proficient Emerging Beginning
There are at least three resources in the storyboard. Titles and descriptions are accurate and complete.
There are two resources in the storyboard. Titles and descriptions are accurate and complete.
One resource is correct and the title and description are accurate and complete.
The illustrations represent the descriptions using appropriate scenes, characters and items.
The illustrations relate to the descriptions, but are difficult to understand.
The illustrations do not clearly relate to the descriptions.
Evidence of Effort
Work is well written and carefully thought out.
Work shows some evidence of effort.
Work shows little evidence of any effort.
Spelling, grammar, and punctuation are mostly correct.
Spelling, grammar, and punctuation are somewhat correct.
Spelling, grammar, and punctuation are mostly incorrect.

How to Connect Southwest Resources to Local and Global Perspectives


Introduction and Resource Identification

Begin by introducing the concept of Southwest resources and the importance of understanding their local and global implications. Discuss the relevance of these resources to students' lives. Guide students in identifying and categorizing various Southwest resources, such as minerals, agriculture, energy sources, and water.


Local Exploration and Implications

Engage students in local exploration by focusing on the Southwest's specific resources. Provide opportunities for students to research, analyze, and discuss the local significance of these resources. Encourage students to consider how these resources impact their community, economy, and daily lives. Discuss topics like employment, conservation, and sustainability.


Global Connections and Challenges

Shift the focus to the global perspective. Help students understand how Southwest resources are interconnected with the larger world. Explore questions related to resource distribution, trade, and global environmental concerns. Engage in discussions about resource scarcity, energy demands, and environmental issues that have global relevance.


Critical Thinking and Discussion

Facilitate a critical thinking session where students reflect on the implications of Southwest resources from both local and global perspectives. Encourage open discussions and debates on related topics. Guide students in considering potential solutions and actions, such as sustainable resource management and international cooperation. Encourage them to express their opinions and ideas about responsible resource use.

Frequently Asked Questions about US Regions Southwest - Resources

What are the primary mineral resources found in the Southwest, and how do they contribute to the regional economy?

The Southwest region is rich in mineral resources, including copper, uranium, silver, and gold. These minerals play a pivotal role in the regional economy. Copper, in particular, is a major contributor, with Arizona being one of the largest copper-producing states in the nation. The mining industry generates jobs, revenue, and export opportunities, supporting the economic well-being of the region.

How do natural resources and environmental factors affect the region's challenges and opportunities, including issues like water scarcity, wildfires, and conservation efforts?

The arid climate of the Southwest poses significant challenges, particularly regarding water scarcity. The region faces water management challenges, often exacerbated by prolonged droughts. Wildfires are a recurring threat, impacting both natural ecosystems and human communities. Conservation efforts are crucial for preserving the unique biodiversity and natural landscapes of the Southwest. Environmental factors play a substantial role in shaping these challenges and opportunities.

What types of worksheets can be used to teach students about renewable energy sources and how can they encourage a deeper understanding of the region's role in clean energy production?

Worksheets can include activities such as calculating solar panel efficiency, analyzing wind patterns, and examining the economic and environmental benefits of clean energy. These worksheets encourage students to understand the Southwest's vital contribution to renewable energy production, given its abundance of sunlight and wind, and its role in reducing carbon emissions.

What are some effective methods for using storyboards and worksheets to encourage students to explore the cultural and artistic resources of the Southwest?

Storyboards can visually depict cultural elements from Native American traditions, while worksheets may involve tasks like researching tribal art, creating traditional crafts, and analyzing the cultural significance of Native American influences on the region's arts and crafts. These materials engage students in exploring the rich cultural and artistic heritage of the Southwest.

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