This google site was created to provide electronic access to all resources provided or referred to during the AP Human Geography workshop presented on Tuesday August 26, 2014 and Tuesday September 1, 2015 for Chesterfield County Public Schools. 

Please direct any questions, comments or concerns to Shannon Castelo at shannon_castelo@ccpsnet.net

Sincere thanks goes out to the AP Human Geography community for their inspiration and support. Many of these resources and ideas are inspired or accumulated from the hundreds of AP Human Geography teachers across the US who graciously and generously share their materials and ideas via workshops, summer institutes, social media, NCGE, among others. I have attempted to give due credit when able. It is not my intention to claim credit for all ideas presented here. Please let me know if you see an idea that is yours so that I may credit you accordingly. 
I strongly encourage all AP Human teachers to join the AP Community for AP Human Geography via the College Board webite along with the AP Human Geograpy Facebook groups, NCGE and your local Geographic Alliance to access a plethora of useful materials and insights. 

General Resources: 

AP Human Geography 9th Grade Start Up Plan ( for James River High School- Chesterfield County Public Schools, Virginia)

Book Recommendations:
This Fleeting World by David Christian
Kate Turabian's Guide to Writers of Research Papers, Thesis and Dissertations
Secrets of Top Students by Stephanie Weisman

AP HG by Unit

Unit 1- Geography: Its Nature and Perspectives
One of the biggest concerns for teachers of Freshman is how to instruct students on how to "think geographically" or to begin to see the world's spatial patterns and processes in an analytical way. This lesson adapted from one designed by Dr. Robert Morrill begins to ask students to analyze the spatial patterns of their own lives and is a great way to start the year! 

Key Curriculum Points:
A. Major geographical concepts underlying the geographical perspective: 
location, space, place, scale, pattern, nature and society, regionalization, 
globalization, and gender issues
    1. How to use and think about maps and geospatial data
    2. How to understand and interpret the implications of associations among 
    phenomena in places
    3. How to recognize and interpret at different scales the relationships 
    among patterns and processes 
    4. How to define regions and evaluate the regionalization process
    5. How to characterize and analyze changing interconnections among places
B.  Use of geospatial technologies, such as GIS, remote sensing, global 
    positioning systems (GPS), and online maps
C.  Sources of geographical information and ideas: the field, census data, 
    online data, aerial photography, and satellite imagery
D. Identification of major world regions 

Matching FRQs: ALL

Be careful for: 
Confusion between terms like place and location, concentration and density, students trusting maps too willingly or taking data at face value ( look for the map bias)

Pick a PING 
Shared Community Resources Google Drive
Orange/Balloon Activity

Unit 2- Population and Migration
The Population and Migration units are a great way to "hook" younger students as the material is particularly interesting to students. The human element of the impact of population and migration trends in the world is something students can relate to. Use experiential exercises and tactile learning ( make the DTM using varies colored yarn, build a population pyramid using legos) to engage students in this data heavy section of the curriculum. 

Key Curriculum Points:
A. Geographical analysis of population using maps and the population pyramids
B. Population growth and decline over time and space
    1. Historical trends and projections for the future (Malthus, Neo- Malthusians, Boserup)
    2. Theories of population growth and decline, including the Demographic 
    Transition Model 
    3. Regional variations of demographic transition (England's growth vs. emerging economies like             South Korea) This wikipedia article has a good summary of historical studies on various DTM                     scenarios as a starting point. 
    4. Effects of national population policies: promoting population growth in 
    some countries or reducing fertility rates in others ( China One Child, India's sterilization)- World In     Balance by NOVA is a great DVD to have! 
    5. Environmental impacts of population change on water use, food supplies,     
    biodiversity, the atmosphere, and climate 
    6. Population and natural hazards: impacts on policy, economy, and society
C. Migration
    1. Types of migration: transnational, internal, chain, step, seasonal 
    agriculture (e.g., transhumance), and rural to urban 
    2. Major historical migrations
    3. Push and pull factors, and migration in relation to employment and 
    quality of life
    4. Refugees, asylum seekers, and internally displaced persons
    5. Consequences of migration: socioeconomic, cultural, environmental, and 
    political; immigration policies; remittances

Matching FRQs:

2003   #3:  Europe as a Source/Destination for International Migration Using the Demographic Transition Model
2005  #2:   Push/Pull Factors of Immigration to the United States 
2006  #1:   Selected Worldwide Migration Patterns, Late 20th Century
2008  #2:   Net-in/Net-out migration U.S.
2010  # 3   Population Pyramids/analyzing demographic transition model
2011  #2    Malthus Theory/Critics/neo-Malthusians
2012  #3    Muslim migration to Europe
2013   #2  Aging societies

Be careful for:
Confusion about DTM ( they MUST know this); Student inability to articulate population theories; lack of historical background to understand current migration trends;  stay away from focusing on US historical migration- global is much more significant; confusion about the difference between migration types (transitional vs. chain vs. step)-- acting or drawing these out may help!

Population Pyramid Legos

Unit 3- Cultural Patterns and Processes
The culture unit is a great way to connect with World History curriculum on your campus. The study of world religions creation of cultural regions allows us to support AP World History in the sophomore year. This allows us to show students that we can find geographic data and information from more than just a map or data chart. Use the photo analysis lesson here to give students an easy way to remember the key elements of a cultural landscape.  Additionally this is a great way to get students to analyze their OWN neighborhood's cultural landscape. Perfect time for a field trip in an AP Human Geography class!  

Key Curriculum Points:
A. Concepts of culture 
    1. Culture traits
    2. Diffusion patterns (stimulus, contagious, hierarchical, expansion)
    3. Acculturation, assimilation, and multiculturalism
    4. Cultural region, vernacular regions, and culture hearths
    5. Globalization and the effects of technology on cultures ( check out this video on Bhutan and the introduction of cable TV)
B. Cultural differences and regional patterns 
    1. Language and communications ( Enduring Languages project is a great resource for understanding the important of language to culture)
    2. Religion and sacred space
    3. Ethnicity and nationalism
    4. Cultural differences in attitudes toward gender
    5. Popular and folk culture
    6. Cultural conflicts, and law and policy to protect culture
C. Cultural landscapes and cultural identity
    1. Symbolic landscapes and sense of place
    2. The formation of identity and place making
    3. Differences in cultural attitudes and practices toward the environment
    4. Indigenous peoples 

Matching FRQs:
2002  #2:   The Shaping of the Cultural Landscape Through Religion
2003  #2:   Tourism’s effect on the Regional Landscape
2007  #2     Revival of Minority languages (must use after unit 4)
2009  #1     Distribution of religious groups on US landscape/WHY

Be careful for:
Avoid getting "bogged down" here as the material can be broad and dense and student interest level is high;  focus on impact of landscape of geographic and landscape patterns; Confusion between acculturation and assimilation; cultural sensitivity is key

Google my maps
Folk Food Day
Cultural Terms Scavenger Hunt ( using google my maps)

Unit 4- Political Organization of Space
One of the biggest criticisms at our school about offering AP Human Geography is that the class is not necessarily writing intensive and thus, students do not learn to write analytically in preparation of later AP Social Studies courses that require this element. To alleviate this I instruct students on how to write a DBQ in the political unit!  We look at African Imperialism and use the documents to understand the political organization of space that occurred post imperialism. This was a DBQ assigned to AP World History students several years ago. 

Key Curriculum Points:
A. Territorial dimensions of politics
    1. The concepts of political power and territoriality (Here is a lesson from an APHG teacher about Korea and territorial disputes)
    2. The nature, meaning, and function of boundaries
    3. Influences of boundaries on identity, interaction, and exchange ( Check out this lesson from Wide Angle about borders in Botswana)
    4. Federal and unitary states, confederations, centralized government, and 
    forms of governance
    5. Spatial relationships between political systems and patterns of ethnicity, 
    economy, and gender
    6. Political ecology: impacts of law and policy on the environment and 
    environmental justice
B. Evolution of the contemporary political pattern
    1. The nation-state concept
    2. Colonialism and imperialism
    3. Democratization 
    4. Fall of communism and legacy of the Cold War ( map of Europe's borders through time is here)
    5. Patterns of local, regional, and metropolitan governance
C. Changes and challenges to political-territorial arrangements
    1. Changing nature of sovereignty
    2. Fragmentation, unification, and cooperation
    3. Supranationalism and international alliances
    4. Devolution of countries: centripetal and centrifugal forces
    5. Electoral geography: redistricting and gerrymandering
    6. Armed conflicts, war, and terrorism

Matching FRQs:
2002  #1:   Nation/State Pursuit-Conflict
2005  #1:   Supranationalism and Devolution
2006  #3:   Centrifugal and Centripetal Forces in South Asia
2012  #1     Walls and Borders
2014  #2    Superimposed boundaries and landlocked states.

Be careful for:
Focus on more boundaries than are included in your ONE textbook ( search the big five texts),  lack of political history may lead to student inability to explain current political conflict

State Shape Simulation ( FRQ Practice)

Unit 5- Agriculture, Food Production and Rural Land Use
For our suburban students at JRHS the farming unit is a particular challenge. Understanding rural land use patterns can be something they simply can't relate to.  I designed the newsletter activity to force students to write from the Point of View of the farmer and look at the challenges of farming today. A guest speaker ( local organic farmer?) or field trip to a farm can help students connect as well. 

Key Curriculum Points:
A. Development and diffusion of agriculture
    1. Neolithic Agricultural Revolution
    2. Second Agricultural Revolution
    3. Green Revolution
    4. Large-scale commercial agriculture and agribusiness
B. Major agricultural production regions
    1. Agricultural systems associated with major bioclimatic zones
    2. Variations within major zones and effects of markets
    3. Interdependence among regions of food production and consumption
C. Rural land use and settlement patterns
    1. Models of agricultural land use, including von Thünen’s model
    2. Settlement patterns associated with major agriculture types: subsistence, 
    cash cropping, plantation, mixed farming, monoculture, pastoralism, 
    ranching, forestry, fishing and aquaculture
    3. Land use/land cover change: irrigation, desertification, deforestation, 
    wetland destruction, conservation efforts to protect or restore natural 
    land cover, and global impacts
    4. Roles of women in agricultural production and farming communities

Matching FRQs:
2001   #1:   Green Revolution  1945-1989
2004   #2:   Spatial Distribution of the Poultry Industry(can be used also in unit 6)
2007   # 1  Von Thunen Theory on Agriculture
2008   #1  Von Thunen and Burgess Theory  Rural land use vs. Urban land use
2009   #3    Decline in Dairy farming/Increase in Organic Farming
2010   #1    Location Theory/Weber’s Model  Ethanol Plants in US
2012   #2    Slash and burn
2014   #3    Coffee Industry  (use after teaching unit 7)

Be careful for:
Lack of physical geography/earth science knowledge;  do not forget gender roles here; apply Von Thunen to current land use and discuss its relevance; GO TO  A FARM

Farming Group Posters 
King Corn
David Phinney Guest Speaker
Farming Field Trip
Global Farmer's Market 

Unit 6- Industrialization and Economic Development
Consistently we see our students struggle with economic geography despite the fact they take basic economics at the Middle School level. The complexity of economic principles can be difficult to overcome at the 9th grade level. Applying economic principles or seeing visual representations can  help. This google earth lesson forces students to look for geographic patterns related to Central Place Theory and food deserts. Ultimately students may be not quite ready to digest sophisticated economic theory but this is a start. 

Key Curriculum Points:
A. Growth and diffusion of industrialization
    1. The changing roles of energy and technology
    2. Industrial Revolution
    3. Models of economic development: Rostow’s Stages of Economic Growth 
    and Wallerstein’s World Systems Theory
    4. Geographic critiques of models of industrial location: bid rent, Weber’s 
    comparative costs of transportation and industrial location in relation to 
    resources, location of retailing and service industries, and local economic 
    development within competitive global systems of corporations and 
B. Social and economic measures of development
    1. Gross domestic product and GDP per capita- The Material World book has some great images and data for student comparison and analysis- here is a curriculum guide for it. 
    2. Human Development Index ( Use this site to give students perspective on material "wealth" in the world. 
    3. Gender Inequality Index
    4. Income disparity and the Gini coefficient
    5. Changes in fertility and mortality
    6. Access to health care, education, utilities, and sanitation
C. Contemporary patterns and impacts of industrialization and development
    1. Spatial organization of the world economy
    2. Variations in levels of development (uneven development)
    3. Deindustrialization, economic restructuring, and the rise of service and 
    high technology economies
    4. Globalization, manufacturing in newly industrialized countries (NICs), 
    and the international division of labor
    5. Natural resource depletion, pollution, and climate change
    6. Sustainable development 
    7. Government development initiatives: local, regional, and national policies
    8. Women in development and gender equity in the workforce

Matching FRQs:
2001   #3:   Rostow Model, Regional Applications
2004   #1:   Spatial Distribution of Maquiladoras
2006   #2:   Advantages/Disadvantages of Industrial Location in Small Southern Towns
2007   #3     Economic Restructuring/global international division of labor
2008   #3     Gender/enrollment girls in school   Effects on Pop/Eco Dev/Gender roles
2011   #3    Spatial Distribution of automobile industry factories over time
2013 #1      High Tech industries and agglomeration
2014  #1     Rostow and Wallerstein Economic Models

Be careful for:
Confusion of models, Do not forget the GiNi Coefficient ( and Lorenz curve) as it is not included in Rubenstein; confusion about EEZs and SEZs, lack of real study in economic theory makes this a challenging subject for students so an introductory unit may help. 

Beginning of Globalization ( Silk Road TED ed by Shannon! )
Material World Poster Analysis
Development Project
UN Data/Development Table

Unit 7- Cities and Urban Land Use
Our Urban Geography unit is a great way to connect with AP Environmental Science of your campus and show students the relevance of geography in subject areas outside of just the social sciences. This lesson was designed along with our APES teacher and culminates in APES students evaluating the sustainability of the urban design to determine a "winner" of city 2.0. 

Key Curriculum Points:
A. Development and character of cities
    1. Origin of cities; site and situation characteristics
    2. Forces driving urbanization
    3. Borchert’s epochs of urban transportation development - make connections between Borchert and population and development with this Hans Rosling TED talk! 
    4. World cities and megacities
    5. Suburbanization processes
B. Models of urban hierarchies: reasons for the distribution and size of cities
    1. Gravity model
    2. Christaller’s central place theory    
    3. Rank-size rule
    4. Primate cities
C. Models of internal city structure and urban development: strengths and 
    limitations of models
    1. Burgess concentric zone model
    2. Hoyt sector model
    3. Harris and Ullman multiple nuclei model
    4. Galactic city model
    5. Models of cities in Latin America, North Africa and the Middle East, 
    sub-Saharan Africa, East Asia, and South Asia
D. Built environment and social space
    1. Types of residential buildings
    2. Transportation and utility infrastructure
    3. Political organization of urban areas
    4. Urban planning and design (e.g., gated communities, New Urbanism, 
    and smart-growth policies)
    5. Census data on urban ethnicity, gender, migration, and socioeconomic 
    6. Characteristics and types of edge cities: boomburgs, greenfields, uptowns
E. Contemporary urban issues
    1. Housing and insurance discrimination, and access to food stores
    2. Changing demographic, employment, and social structures
    3. Uneven development, zones of abandonment, disamenity, and 
    4. Suburban sprawl and urban sustainability problems: land and energy use, 
    cost of expanding public education services, home financing and debt 
    5. Urban environmental issues: transportation, sanitation, air and water 
    quality, remediation of brownfields, and farmland protection

Matching FRQs:
2001   #2:   Acceleration of Growth of North American Suburbs since the 195os 
and the 1960s
2002   #3:   Zone X and Zone Y
2003   #1:   Core/Periphery Urban Systems of Argentina and Germany
2004   #3:   Residential Land Use Patterns in CBDs and Suburbs
2005   #3:   Revitalization Processes of CBDs
2008   #1    Von Thunen vs Burgess Concentric Zone Model Land use and   assumptions of models
2009   #2    Squatter Cities spatial distribution/causes/effects
2011   #1     Primate cities/Rank Size Rule,  Effects of Primate cities on eco dev of world cities
2013   #3      Railroads and Interstates affecting city development
2010  #1   Development of state using  -economic development Unit 5, transportation networks Unit 6/7, forward capital Unit 4, and ethnicity Units 3/4

Be careful for:
There are MANY models here; very specific vocabulary must be addressed that is not in Rubenstein (boomburgs, greenfields, uptowns); review books often have good generic graphics for various city models.

Sidewalk Chalk Models
Urban Game

TED Talks for APHG

  1. Steven Johnson Tours the Ghost Map 1 (Nature of HG), Development,http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/steven_johnson_tours_the_ghost_map.html Kids loved this one.  Such an eye opener and tried to make connections to diffusion, population, Sherlock Holmes and other period movies. 
  2. James H Kunstler dissects Suburbia Pop/Folk Culture, Urbanhttp://www.ted.com/talks/james_howard_kunstler_dissects_suburbia.html Classic about space and human interaction.
  3. Parag Khanna Maps the Future of Countries Political, Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/parag_khanna_maps_the_future_of_countries.html
  4. Derek Sivers:Weird, or just different? Urbanhttp://www.ted.com/talks/derek_sivers_weird_or_just_different.html
  5. Eric Sanders pictures New York Urbanhttp://www.ted.com/talks/eric_sanderson_pictures_new_york_before_the_city.html
  6. Carolyn Steel:How Food Shapes our Cities Urban, Agriculturehttp://www.ted.com/talks/carolyn_steel_how_food_shapes_our_cities.html
  7. Stewart Brand on Squatter Cities Urban, Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/stewart_brand_on_squatter_cities.html
  8. Robert Neuwirth on our "shadow cities" Urban, Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/robert_neuwirth_on_our_shadow_cities.html
  9. Majora Carter:Greening the ghetto Urban, Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/majora_carter_s_tale_of_urban_renewal.html
  10. The Power of Cities theme page Urban, Development,http://www.ted.com/themes/the_power_of_cities.html
  11. Rick Warren on a life of purpose Relgionhttp://www.ted.com/talks/rick_warren_on_a_life_of_purpose.html
  12. Dan Dennet's response to Rick Warren Religionhttp://www.ted.com/talks/dan_dennett_s_response_to_rick_warren.html
  13. AJ Jacob's year on living biblically Religionhttp://www.ted.com/talks/a_j_jacobs_year_of_living_biblically.html
  14. Richard Dawkin's on militant aetheism Religionhttp://www.ted.com/talks/richard_dawkins_on_militant_atheism.html
  15. Is There a God? theme page Religion http://www.ted.com/themes/is_there_a_god.html
  16. Wade Davis on the worldwide web of ritual Culturehttp://www.ted.com/talks/wade_davis_on_the_worldwide_web_of_belief_and_ritual.html
  17. Wade Davis on endangered cultures Culturehttp://www.ted.com/talks/wade_davis_on_endangered_cultures.html
  18. Phil Borges on endangered cultures CUlturehttp://www.ted.com/talks/phil_borges_on_endangered_cultures.html
  19. Hans Rosling shows the best stats Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_shows_the_best_stats_you_ve_ever_seen.html
  20. Hans Rosling's new insights on poverty Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_reveals_new_insights_on_poverty.html
  21. Hans Rosling on global population growth Population, Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_on_global_population_growth.html
  22. Hans Rosling: Asia's rise how and when Political, Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_asia_s_rise_how_and_when.html
  23. Hans Rosling on HIV Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_the_truth_about_hiv.html
  24. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala on aid and trade Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/ngozi_okonjo_iweala_on_aid_versus_trade.html
  25. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala:Want to help Africa? Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/ngozi_okonjo_iweala_on_doing_business_in_africa.html
  26. Bono's call to action for Africa Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/bono_s_call_to_action_for_africa.html
  27. BIll Gates on mosquitos, malaria and ed Developmenthttp://www.ted.com/talks/bill_gates_unplugged.html
  28. Rethinking Poverty theme page Development, Population, Migrationhttp://www.ted.com/themes/rethinking_poverty.html
  29. Al Gore's new thinking on climate change Agriculturehttp://www.ted.com/talks/al_gore_s_new_thinking_on_the_climate_crisis.html
  30. Al Gore on averting climate crisis Agriculturehttp://www.ted.com/talks/al_gore_on_averting_climate_crisis.html

APHG links 
A cumulative list posted to the AP Human Geography Teacher Community and Facebook pages. 

Geography Bell ringers

Limitless power video
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ENAnkrpdwrQFree GIS mapping, out Aug 19

Houston High school activities for APHG

Mercator map generator

FRQ commands

Spatial distribution lesson

APHG crate player videos

Unit 1 ppt

Smarty pins game

 Seinfeld clip for topics 

Cultural diffusion 

NGS map generator 

Amazing fact generator link 

Fantasy geopolitics game

Geography of your campus

APHG YouTube channel

Traveler IQ challenge game 

Pinterest info graphic good/bad examples

Geography is key video


Map of where young people live

US population map 

Epidemiological transition map

Human migration video

Epidemiology map: what each region will die of


Happy birthday in different languages https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=BGAXxiwxFZk&feature=share

Dialect quiz

Toilets photos

Language toponyms sign

English is hard to learn poem

NGS Funeral pyres article, etc...

Columbusing article for culture



Is Palestine a country?

Gerrymandering in texas

Origins of Arab -Israeli conflict in 5minutes video
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=OhrMgO5e028Short history of Israel and Palestine 

Middle East maps that don't help
Video, a short intro on Palestine 

How to redraw the world map

Netherlands/Holland explained 


No to GMO 

Food fraud

Maps of food in America

Quinoa articles




US energy maps

Minecraft geography 

Ice cream theory


Why competitors opens stores next to each other

Urban heat island in NYC


Keller review strategies from NCGE 

Katz class website



2014 FRQ scoring guidelines

Memorization v learning

Written Notes v laptop

Katz geography site on google

Atlases for cheap

Exam percentage info

OpEd on not doing your kids homework

Student advice

Technology applications for APHG

1. ArcGIS storymaps (free public, non commercial accounts available)

Create your own here: 



Or use the gallery of maps here: 


Lesson Ideas:

1. Have students create a cultural landscape analysis of their own community using story map templates

2. Students can track the movement of goods through the commodity chain by creating a story map of a product from primary to tertiary sectors.

2. National Geographic MapMaker Interactive

Make your own geo tours or custom layered maps


or use already made activities and maps



Lesson Ideas: 

1. Have students compare layers showing asylum seekers origins and destinations. What is the relationship between the two. Pick any two countries and explain economic, political and social factors contributing to immigration or emigration. 

2. Analyze and explain the relationship between CO2 emissions GDP layers.