National Parks Themed Lesson Plan Activities For Teletherapy
The national parks are not only a top choice travel destination of mine, but also one of my favorite topics to incorporate into teletherapy with students of all ages. This theme allows me and my students to broaden our scenic horizons while we target speech and language goals. With National Park Week occurring every mid-April (the week of Earth Day), it's the perfect opportunity to explore some of the most beautiful corners of the country!
Speaking of exploring, check out the links below to a variety of national park themed resources from around the web!
Epic (free for educators) has several educator-made collections dedicated to national parks, including this one, this one, and this one. There's a lot there, but if you have a specific park in mind, just type it into the search bar!
And here are some links to YouTube read-aloud videos:
See all of the national parks in one minute in this video!
Check out this video to learn how the Grand Canyon was formed.
Here's a video all about Yellowstone, the United States' first national park.
Explore nature in the parks with these Sesame Street and National Park Foundation videos.
This 4-minute video gives the interesting history of the National Park Service.
Games & Activities
There is TONS to see on the National Park Service's "Parks Through Your Screen" home page for kids, including virtual models, 3D tours, and videos!
The live webcams of the parks are not to miss!
This National Park quiz is a fun way to practice answering questions, expand vocabulary, or wrap up a session.
Similarly, this game on jeapardylabs.com makes for some friendly competition.
This quiz asks a series of questions to find the ideal park for someone's interests and travel plans (real or made up!).
This matching game pairs animals with the parks they can be found in!
All the pictures on this website can be colored digitally.
This Digital Guidebook opens in Google Slides and includes links to 10 U.S. national park websites for students to explore. Students can then synthesize information from the site and complete the guidebook while targeting goals such as identifying main idea and supporting details, determining word meaning, and reading comprehension. And don't forget to check out the built-in links to the live webcams of each park for added excitement!
This interactive PDF contains passages for six national parks and questions for each one to target vocabulary in context, synonyms and antonyms, comprehension, and making nferences. I generally do one park a week with my students for several weeks in April and May!
Here are a few more links to articles for targeting various language goals:
Want more? The National Park Service has you covered. They have this dedicated space on their site for teachers. It's full of links (nearly 200!) to "Distance Learning" resources for students of all ages. It's a lot to sift through, but you can narrow your search by grade level, common core standard, subject, and more on the left side of the page.
I hope these ideas bring you and your students all the beauty of the nation’s protected lands (minus the pricey airfare and bugs 🤣) in teletherapy this year. Plus, no one will even notice you sneaking in work on some speech and language goals. Next stop — anywhere you choose!