Geography of the Common Core
Geography for Life: Six Essential Elements
1. The world in spatial terms
Geographers study the relationships between people, places, and environments by
mapping information about them into a spatial context.
2. Places and regions
Identities and lives of individuals and peoples are rooted in particular places and in
those human constructs called regions
3. Physical systems
Physical processes shape the Earth’s surface and how they interact with plant and
animal life to create, sustain, and modify ecosystems.
4. Human systems
People are central to geography in that human activities help shape the Earth’s
surface, human settlements and structures.
5. Environment and society
The physical environment is modified by human activities, as a consequence of the
ways in which human societies value and use Earth’s natural resources.
6. The uses of geography
Geography enables people to develop an understanding of the relationships
between people, places, and environments over time.
Definition of geo-literacy
• “It must be stated that the CCSS-ELA standards were not designed to
supplant the disciplinary standards in social studies or science but rather to
emphasize the need for INTEGRATION.”
• Geo-literacy – the set of geographic concepts and skills that are required to
recognize when decisions may have far-reaching consequences and the
ability to reason through them systematically.
• Three components of geo-literacy
1. interaction – between human and natural systems
2. interconnections – focuses on geographic reasoning
3. implications – understanding impacts of decisions, and being able to
make well-reasoned decisions.
Geography and English?
ELA Content Standards
1. Ask and answer questions
about key details in a text.
GEOGRAPHY STANDARD 18: HOW TO
APPLY GEOGRAPHY TO INTERPRET THE
PRESENT AND PLAN FOR THE FUTURE
Theme: Changes in Geographic
4th Grade Band
2.A. Describe current changes in
places, regions, and environments
and predict how these locations
may be different in the future
What physical forces and processes
account for the presence of these
islands in the Ocean?
In a geological time scale, what does
the future hold for these islands. What
would be the main economic assets of
What would be the main economic and
environmental concerns of this
READING STANDARD #6
• Assess how point of view or purpose shapes
the content and style of a text.
READING STANDARD #9
• Analyze how two or more texts address similar
themes or topics in order to build knowledge or
to compare the approaches the authors take.
READING STANDARD #8
• Delineate and evaluate the argument and
specific claims in a text, including the validity
of the reasoning as well as the relevance and
sufficiency of the evidence.
READING STANDARD #1
• Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to
make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence
when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from
READING STANDARD #1
• Read closely to determine what the text says
explicitly and to make logical inferences from
it; cite specific textual evidence when writing
or speaking to support conclusions drawn
from the text.
READING STANDARD #2
• Determine central ideas or themes of a text
and analyze their development; summarize
the key supporting details and ideas.
READING STANDARD #3
• Analyze how and why individuals, events, and ideas
develop and interact over the course of a text.
READING STANDARD #5
• Analyze the structure of texts, including how
specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger
portions of the text (e.g.--a
section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to
each other and the whole.
READING STANDARD #7
• Integrate and evaluate content presented in
diverse media and formats, including visually
and quantitatively, as well as in words.
READING STANDARD #10
• Read and comprehend complex literary and
informational texts independently and
How can competent teachers help
students understand a complex
Provide geographic information
Teach geographic concepts
Use data, maps, and geospatial technology
Ask questions which encourage spatial thinking.