Principles of Environmental Science
Chapter 6: Environmental Conservation-
Forests, Grasslands, Parks, and Nature Preserves
What are the original purposes of parks and nature preserves in North
Background information on national parks that I found interesting from the
Yellowstone National Park (established 1872)
was the first nation park in the world. Its
purpose was to protect the natural curiosities of
the geysers and hot springs, but the park was
large enough to encompass and preserve
Banff Nation Park in Canada was established in
From 1900-1915, the United States added the
Grand Canyon, Glacier, Mesa Verde, and
Rocky Mountain National Park to the federal
The United States’ national park system has
grown to more than 376 parks, monuments,
historic sites, and recreation areas.
Most of our national parks are intended to
preserve an area as we believe it looked before
any human habitation.
Lesson Plan: For this lesson plan students will learn about the national parks
in the United States. They will research the parks in books, magazines, the
Internet, and on maps. They will look at human modification of the parks
and the intended and unintended effects of the modifications. I like this
lesson and the only thing I would change is the passports and how the parks
are presented. The lesson says for students to create their passport, draw a
picture of their favorite park on the cover and write the name of it and its
location, then fill the other pages with other parks they researched. I would
change this to have each student or a group of student’s research one park.
Than have the students create a poster for the park they researched. Half of
the students or groups will then be seated around the room and the students
will take turns going around to the different “parks.” In their passports, they
will draw and write something they learned and receive a stamp (or sticker)
from the park they visited.
Local Information: The obvious local information is the dunes, the Indiana
Dunes National Lakeshore. The dunes were once a common meeting ground
of trees and wildflowers in all directions, but are now a common meeting
ground for people from around the world.