Cultures of the World


Cultures of the World teaches students about various cultures of the world and helps them learn about and respect other people’s cultures and beliefs. Students will learn related vocabulary in addition to characteristics of various world cultures.

Additional options for this lesson, described in the “Options for Lesson” section of the classroom procedures page, include the opportunity to plan a “World Culture” week with fun food and culture-specific games. Students can also be assigned a culture or country to research and present about during class. Adults who have traveled to different countries can also present about the similarities and differences between cultures that they’ve experienced.

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What our Cultures of the World lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Cultures of the World teaches students about cultures from different parts of the world. They will learn how to define culture, list aspects of various cultures, and identify many cultures of the world. This lesson is for students in the 1st grade, 2nd grade, and 3rd grade.

Classroom Procedure

Every lesson plan provides you with a classroom procedure page that outlines a step-by-step guide to follow. You do not have to follow the guide exactly. The guide helps you organize the lesson and details when to hand out worksheets. It also lists information in the yellow box that you might find useful. You will find the lesson objectives, state standards, and number of class sessions the lesson should take to complete in this area. In addition, it describes the supplies you will need as well as what and how you need to prepare beforehand. For this activity, the only supplies you will need are the content pages and worksheets. To prepare for this lesson ahead of time, you can pair the students for the activity and copy all of the handouts.

Options for Lesson

Included with this lesson is an “Options for Lesson” section that lists a number of suggestions for activities to add to the lesson or substitutions for the ones already in the lesson. For this lesson, these options include letting students work either alone or in groups for the activity. Students can also take their activity questions home to complete and then meet with their partner the next day, rather than having them complete the activity worksheet during class time. You could also plan an entire “World Culture” week for this lesson, where you serve foods from around the world, play culture-specific games, and have students dress in their culture’s clothing. You can also assign groups of students different cultures or countries to research in-depth and present to the class. Finally, you can invite adults who have lived or traveled outside of the country to come to your class and speak about what that culture was like.

Teacher Notes

The Teacher Notes page includes a paragraph with additional guidelines and things to think about as you begin to plan your lesson. For this lesson, the teacher notes section reminds you that many students may find the concept of a “culture” confusing. It also suggests incorporating cultures in your lesson that are not included in the lesson plan but may be represented by your students. This page also includes lines that you can use to add your own notes as you’re preparing for this lesson.



There are four content pages in this lesson. The first section of this lesson will teach students what a culture is and why having a culture is important. This section explains that there are some things that people who have the same culture often have in common, such as the special events they celebrate, the food they are, how they live, and what their religion is. Cultures are less about what you can see about a person, such as their hair, eye, or skin color, and more about what you cannot see.

Identities are typically based on cultures. In addition to the things listed above, cultures also include the activities someone does, the way a family lives day-to-day, they things someone values, their beliefs, the language or languages they speak, the clothes they wear, and more!

Students will also learn that they are a part of a family, which is part of a culture. Cultures make up communities, and communities make up societies. Societies then make up the entire world! They, like almost everyone else in the world, are a part of a family, culture, community, society, and the world itself.

World Cultures

The next section of this lesson plan provides information about many cultures as bulleted lists. The lists describe traditions, food, religion, language, and more for each country or continent. It also describes other traditions found around the world that students will find interesting.

Students will learn that, in American culture, some typical foods are pie, banana splits, hamburgers, and hot dogs. Some celebrations include Thanksgiving, Halloween, Christmas, Easter, and St. Patrick’s Day. Clothing is typically casual, such as jeans, shorts, and sweatpants.

In African culture, some common food are spicy and have very strong flavors! Some commonly celebrations in Africa are Kwanzaa, Yam Adae Kese, and Sed. It’s also important to note that Africa is a large continent and there are many individual, distinct cultures to be found there that are all interesting and unique. For example, there are 11 official languages in South Africa!

More information about French, Chinese, and Spanish cultures is also found on these pages. Finally, students learn some other interesting cultural facts about places around the world! For example, they will learn that Greek children throw lost teeth onto a roof for good luck, and Brazilians celebrate the New Year by eating a bowl of lentil soup for good luck!

Key Terms

Here is a list of the vocabulary words students will learn in this lesson plan:

  • Culture: The special and unique way a group of people live. The way you live, the special events you celebrate, the foods you eat, your religion, and much more.
  • Family: The people related to you (parents, grandparents, siblings, etc.).
  • Identity: Who you are.
  • Community: Made up of different cultures. This could be part of a neighborhood, a town, a city, or even a country.
  • Society: Different communities make up a society. Every society has rules that people must follow. The rules in a society are followed by the cultures that are a part of the society.
  • World: Different societies make up all the countries of the world.


The Cultures of the World lesson plan includes three worksheets: an activity worksheet, a practice worksheet, and a homework assignment. You can refer to the guide on the classroom procedure page to determine when to hand out each worksheet.


Students work in pairs to discuss and identify parts of their own cultures (if you want, students can also work either alone or in pairs for this activity). They will then decided if their answers are the same or different than their partner’s answers. The students will then write about what they learned about their partner and answer questions about what to do if two different cultures disagree about something. They also draw a picture based on what they’ve learned about their own culture. This drawing can include their favorite sports, foods, holidays, or religious images.


For the practice worksheet, students will read 20 statements about culture and decide whether those statements are true or false. They will also change the false statements to make them true.


The homework assignment asks students to match information to the correct culture. Students will also use their imaginations to come up with a new culture. They list things that would be part of their new culture, like foods, clothing, traditions, and more.

Worksheet Answer Keys

This lesson plan includes answer keys for the practice worksheet and the homework assignment. No answer key is provided for the activity worksheet, as student’s answers will vary depending on their answers and the answers of their partner. If you choose to administer the lesson pages to your students via PDF, you will need to save a new file that omits these pages. Otherwise, you can simply print out the applicable pages and keep these as reference for yourself when grading assignments.

Additional information


1st Grade, 2nd Grade, 3rd Grade


Social Studies, Video

State Educational Standards

LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.2, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.4, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.6, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.2, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.4, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.6

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.

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    Culture Resource

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