Rural, Urban, and Suburban Activities for Kids

Grade Levels: 3-5

In this set of activities adaptable for grades K-3, parents and educators will find ideas for teaching about rural, suburban, and urban communities. These activities are designed to complement the BrainPOP Jr. Rural, Urban, and Suburban topic page, which includes a movie, quizzes, online games, printable activities, and more.

Classroom Activities for Teaching About Rural, Urban, and Suburban

Rural Past

Together with your child, research the library or the internet to learn about your community’s past. Most communities were once rural and slowly changed into suburban or urban environments. You can also visit www.census.gov to learn about your community’s population and its growth. If possible, research historical pictures of your community and analyze them together to learn how your community changed over time. This will also help your child see the differences between urban, suburban, and rural communities.

Field Trip

If possible, take field trips to urban, suburban, and rural areas. Walk around each of the areas and discuss the differences and similarities. Walk around one block in each area and count the number of buildings and compare the numbers. Your child will understand that the density of buildings varies in each type of area. Also, find out about the populations and size of the places you visited by researching at the library or visiting www.census.gov.

Anywhere, USA

Have your child design a city, suburb, or farm. What do people need in order to live in each of those places? Brainstorm the kinds of services and buildings that cities, towns, or rural areas need in order to function. Encourage your child to design places where people can live, gather, and play. Think of places that people might need, such as grocery stores, community service centers, hospitals, and schools. Have your child draw pictures of his or her city, suburb, or farm and ask your child to describe them.

Family and Homeschool Activities for Teaching About Rural, Urban, and Suburban

Rural Past

Together with your child, research the library or the internet to learn about your community’s past. Most communities were once rural and slowly changed into suburban or urban environments. You can also visit www.census.gov to learn about your community’s population and its growth. If possible, research historical pictures of your community and analyze them together to learn how your community changed over time. This will also help your child see the differences between urban, suburban, and rural communities.

Field Trip

If possible, take field trips to urban, suburban, and rural areas. Walk around each of the areas and discuss the differences and similarities. Walk around one block in each area and count the number of buildings and compare the numbers. Your child will understand that the density of buildings varies in each type of area. Also, find out about the populations and size of the places you visited by researching at the library or visiting www.census.gov.

Anywhere, USA

Have your child design a city, suburb, or farm. What do people need in order to live in each of those places? Brainstorm the kinds of services and buildings that cities, towns, or rural areas need in order to function. Encourage your child to design places where people can live, gather, and play. Think of places that people might need, such as grocery stores, community service centers, hospitals, and schools. Have your child draw pictures of his or her city, suburb, or farm and ask your child to describe them.