Droughts introduces students to this natural event and its causes and effects. Students will discover the four different types of droughts and how each one effects the environment, society, and economy.

The “Options for Lesson” section presents several suggestions that you can add to the lesson plan for your students. One option is to have students place containers of water in different areas inside and outside of the school and identify factors of evaporation. Another option is to have them further research how droughts could impact jobs, residents, animals, etc. Students could also research historical droughts and present the information they found to the rest of the class.

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What our Droughts lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Droughts teaches students all about the causes and effects of droughts. Students will identify four different types and explain some of the effects. They will also be able to describe some notable droughts from the world’s history.

This lesson contains four pages of instructional content. The first page explains what a drought is and why it is a problem. The next page introduces the different types. Students will learn traits and facts about each one before learning about the effects a drought can have. There are three classes of drought effects. Finally, they will learn about several historical droughts and how they impacted people and the environment.


Students will work with a partner during the activity worksheet. (You may have them work by themselves or with a group instead if you prefer.) Students will use the drought map of the U.S. to discuss and respond to the questions on the second activity page. If they disagree with a response, they should write both answers to the question. You might also want to provide a map that labels the states to assist them in answering some of the questions. There is a total of 10 questions on this worksheet.


The practice worksheet divides into two sections. On the first section, students must match statements to the correct type of drought. The options are meteorological (M), agricultural (A), hydrological (H), and socioeconomic (S). There are 15 questions in this section. On the second part, students must mark five questions true (T) or false (F).


Similar to the practice worksheet, the homework assignment contains two parts. For the first section, students must identify each drought effect as environmental (E), economic (EC), or social (S). The second part requires students to answer eight questions that relate to the what they learned from the lesson material.

Additional information


3rd Grade, 4th Grade



State Educational Standards

LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.3.2, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.3.3, LB.ELA-Literacy.SL.4.1.C, LB.ELA-Literacy.SL.4.4, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.4.4, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.4.6

Lessons are aligned to meet the education objectives and goals of most states. For more information on your state objectives, contact your local Board of Education or Department of Education in your state.