Lesson Plan: My Career Journey
Lesson Plan: My Career Journey

Lesson Plan: My Career Journey

Powerful Geography Project

My Career Journey

Developed by Ben Lewis and Josh Williams

Subject and Grade Level:

Grade 6

Time Frame: 
Learning Outcomes:

By the end of this lesson, students will be able to:

  1. Identify and explain how economic factors influence population and economic activities of places and regions.
  2. Explain how their choice in career influences the physical and human characteristics of places and regions.
Overview of Lesson: 

Students will explore their future movements through space by investigating careers and the journey these career choices will take them on. They will communicate this through a presentation to the class.

Essential/Guiding Questions: 

  • In what ways and how do career choices influence movement of people and places?
Connection to the Curriculum/Units:
TEKS Content Objective(s): 

-> Grade 6 – 6.3.A-B

(3) Geography. The student understands the factors that influence the locations and characteristics of locations of various contemporary societies on maps and/or globes. The student is expected to:

(A) identify and explain the geographic factors responsible for patterns of population in places and regions;

(B) explain ways in which human migration influences the character of places and regions;

-> Grade 6 – 6.4.A

(4) Geography. The student understands how geographic factors influence the economic development and political relationships of societies. The student is expected to:

(A) explain the geographic factors responsible for the location of economic activities in places and regions;

TEKS Skills Objective(s):    
Powerful Geography Focus:  Which content domain of the Powerful Geography framework (Human Geography, Physical Geography, Places & Regions, Environment & Society) does this lesson address?

-> Environment and Society, Places and Regions, Human Geography, Physical Geography


For Student Use:
  • Internet access
  • Possible links for student exploration

○  Match Career to degree: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/explore-careers/careers/matching-careers-to-degrees

○  Find College with prefered degree program: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/ and/or AAG Guide to Geography

○  Explore character of place using Google Maps/Earth Search

■  Google Maps/Street View to explore character of place: https://www.google.com/maps

■  Google Earth: https://earth.google.com/web/

○  Chamber of Commerce Websites

  • Presentation materials
  • Tools to create business cards (digital or otherwise)
For Teacher Use:
  • Markable world map with at least two colors (one for universities and one for careers)

○  Teachers will mark the positions of careers and schools while students present. This will illustrate spatial relationships between the different careers and help drive home the point of the lesson.

  • Processing sheets

○ Students will jot down each career and their connection to geography. This tool can be utilized during the assessment

  • Ready access to online resources
Resources Needed for this Lesson:

References (if any): (use formal citations)

  •  The teacher will need to link Powerful Geography to students’ aspirations and goals throughout this lesson.
Before the Activity: 

  •  As students move through life they will face many choices. One lifetime aspiration for students will be in the profession they choose. However, many students need help understanding that this choice will take them on journeys through a number of places and regions.  With teacher guidance, students will gain an understanding on how to approach choosing a career and how to explore places and regions.
Procedures to conduct the lesson:

Starting the Lesson:

If needed - a brief overview of Powerful Geography and its four content domains:

● Physical Geography

● Human Geography

● Environment and Society

● Places and Regions

Have students explore the Career Connections one pager to begin exploration of careers and how they fit into the Powerful Geography framework.


Show a couple Powerful Geography -- Professional Geography Interviews

Ex. USGS Scientist; Place and Social Justice; African Diamond Conflicts


The Lesson: 

Part I

1. Have students choose a potential career using “Careers in Geography”, “Student Resources”, and/or Match Career to degree.

2. Use Match Career to degree or AAG Guide to Geography to identify which academic major correlates with career choice.

3. Students should explain how their chosen career could benefit from the study of geography (Physical Geography, Human Geography, Environment and Society, and/or Place and Regions)

a. This information will be included in Part III: Presentation

 Part II

1. After finding major use College Finder or AAG Guide to Geography website to find the students first movement on their career journey.

a. This website is a bit cumbersome, but allows students to choose a college based on region and academic major.

2. After student identifies their post-secondary choice (ex. college), students will document why they chose that location. Presentation topics to include:

a. What degree will they pursue?
b. Why did they choose this degree?
c. What is the average salary for a person in this career?
d. Describe the physical geography surrounding the campus that led them to choose this location. 
e. Describe the human geography surrounding the campus that lead them to choose this location.

3. After students “finish college,” they will choose a location to practice their new career. Presentation topics to include:

a. Why did they choose this place for employment?

i. ex. Location where many of the same types of business reside 
ii. Physical characteristics (climate, landforms) 
iii. Human characteristics (culture, identity, institutions, customers, factories, connectivity, trade, etc.)

Part III

1. Student’s Role: Presenter

a. The student will present a neatly done, mindfully constructed presentation on their chosen career, addressing the objectives mentioned above.

i. Depending on the available tech in the classroom, the student will put together a digital slideshow, present posters, draw on a white board, etc.
ii. The student will create and display his/her business card in a manner of their choosing.
iii. If the teacher allows, the student will field questions from the audience at the end of the presentation.
iv. Students, alongside their presentation, will submit a test question to the teacher based on their chosen career to be a part of the assessment.

2. Student’s Role: Audience

a. Students will listen and learn from each of their peers.
b. Students will take notes on the Processing Sheet, specifically on how the career being presented involves the study of geography.
c. Students will ask questions at the end of each presentation (teacher permitting).

3. Teacher’s Role: Facilitator

a. The teacher will guide the students through every phase of the project.
b. During the presentations, as students are teaching the class, the teacher will be marking the world map with points of interest as students mention them (universities, cities, career destinations, etc.).
c. When the presentations are complete, the teacher will use the world map, with all of the locations marked, to lead a discussion on the impact of geography on virtually every career.
d. After the lesson, the teacher will administer the student-made assessment.


End the Lesson and Closing Product:

1. When career presentations are finished, the teacher will review the class map which has been built during the duration of presentations. The connection to geography and the different careers across the map will help drive home the point that geography and spatial relationships are key to virtually any career.

2. The student-made assessment will be administered. Students are encouraged to use their processing sheets during the test.

Differentiation strategies to meet diverse learner needs: 

  •   Limit activity to only exploring post-secondary schools.
  •  Create presentations via ESRI’s Story Maps or Google Geo alternative.

  •  Each student will create a single, thought provoking question based on their career of choice. The question may be in the format of the student’s choosing. The teacher will compile the student created questions into a single test. After the presentations, the students use their processing sheet and take the test.