• Views 22
  • Favorites

Database Provider


3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th


Science, Social Studies, Biology


30 minutes

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - West, California


This lesson plan is licensed under Creative Commons.

Creative Commons License

Tree Equity Interactive Game

Created By Teacher:
Last Updated:
May 21, 2024
Ask a Question



  • In this interactive game, students play the role of an urban planner who must decide if Los Angeles needs to plant more trees. 

  • The game includes two informational videos and an interactive tree equity map with a variety of demographic indicators that students can use for research.

Accompanying Teaching Materials
Teaching Tips


  • Students receive immediate feedback when they select an incorrect answer.

  • Students have the opportunity to choose between a male and a female avatar.

  • Students cannot fast-forward through the videos.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students cannot go backward in the game; instead, they have to start over from the beginning. 

  • Students should be familiar with the concept of urban planning.

  • Students will need access to a device and an Internet connection.


  • Social studies classes could use this game in a lesson about urban planning or city design. Before playing the game, students could discuss the following questions:

    • What makes a neighborhood a nice place to live?

    • Who is in charge of maintaining neighborhoods?

    • What is the role of the local government in residents' happiness, health, and safety?

    • What impact do trees have on a neighborhood?

  • Science classes could discuss the role that science and data play in municipal decision-making. After playing the game, students could discuss the following questions in pairs or small groups:

    • Why is it important to use data, such as the tree equity map, when making decisions?

    • How can scientists help government officials design solutions to municipal problems?

    • The game provided you with a science-based video on planting trees, a data-driven map about tree equity, and a video that featured a community member's personal story. How are the three sources similar? How are they different? Why might an urban planner consider all three sources when deciding where to plant trees?

  • Other resources on this topic include this video on the connection between systemic racism and the number of trees in neighborhoods, this TED video on planting a million trees in Sierra Leone, and this interactive resource on urban tree planting.

Scientist Notes

This game provides insights on the best approach of tree planting to sequester CO2 emissions, improve air quality, increase urban health, and tackle climate change. It adopts a case study from Los Angeles and explains the need to integrate local people in co-creating sustainable urban reforestation actions in their communities. This is recommended.


Supporting Standards

  • Science
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • 3.ESS3.1 Make a claim about the merit of a design solution that reduces the impacts of a weather-related hazard.
      • 6.ESS3.3 Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • 3.ETS1.1 Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or a want that includes specified criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.
    • LS1: From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes
      • 7.LS1.6 Construct a scientific explanation based on evidence for the role of photosynthesis in the cycling of matter and flow of energy into and out of organisms.
    • LS2: Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics
      • 5.LS2.1 Develop a model to describe the movement of matter among plants, animals, decomposers, and the environment.
  • Social Sciences
    • Civics and Government (K-12)
      • 8.10 Explain the specific roles and responsibilities of citizens in a participatory democracy.

Note On Standards:

This lesson is aligned to SubjectToClimate standards. Review the aligned standards directly in the lesson plan document and teacher slideshow.

Discover more on SubjectToClimate.
Related Resources


Login to leave a review