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Esperanza’s World – Arizona Geography Center – Activities / Teacher Resources

Esperanza’s World – Arizona Geography Center – Activities / Teacher Resources

Activities / Teacher Resources

Arizona Geography Center Teacher Resources


Arizona Indian Reservations Activity Choices

Study the Arizona Geographic Alliance’s Arizona’s Indian Reservations map. Use the information on the map, to help you understand the data. List the reservations according to the date the reservations were established- earliest to latest. Then list the reservations according to sizelargest to smallest. Study the Arizona Geographic Alliance’s Arizona’s Indian Reservations map. Use the information on the map, to help you understand the data. Match reservations to the nearest body of water, a necessity for all communities.
Study the map of Arizona Geographic Alliance’s Arizona’s Indian Reservations map. There are five Apache reservations in the state:

  • Fort Apache (White Mountain)
  • Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation
  • San Carlos Apache
  • Tonto Apache
  • Camp Verde Yavapai-Apache

Name the following:

  • Other tribes that have more than one reservation
  • Reservations that touch the Colorado River
  • The reservation within a reservation
  • Total number of reservations in Arizona
Study the Arizona Apache Reservations Data Table. Add up data totals:

  • Number of square miles of Apache land in the state
  • Apache population totals living on the reservations
  • Types of commerce on the reservations
  • Elevation ranges
  • Other (your choice)


Sky Island Activity Choices

View the interactive map indicating the Sky Islands of SE Arizona. Click on stars for more information. Write down 12 new facts you learn by reading the information pull-downs.
Click to View the Sky Islands Map
Read through the Arizona Biome Data Chart. Make a layered book that includes the information and graphic or visual representations of each biome. Include flora and fauna in your visuals. Go to the following website to learn how to make a layered book.
Click for Directions on how to make a layered book
Skip to page 23 for the directions for the layered book foldable.
Complete the Arizona Biomes and Elevation Mapby coloring the key and then the map with the correct biome. Use the colored map key to help you identify the biome regions.Read the Biomes Data Table to learn more. Then make a Biomes Mobile using the name cards provided and following the directions for mobile construction. Research the two deserts that intersect in the Sky Islands region: Chihuahuan Desert and the Sonoran Desert. Make a chart comparing the two deserts. Pick six (6) categories that you will compare. For example, you could compare size and location.

Pick two (2) of the mountain ranges within the Sky Islands region shown on the map. Make either brochures, a website or an audio file or podcast for visitors who want to hike the mountains, camp and take photos of the flora and fauna they encounter. Remember that Esperanza and her family lived at the foot of the Rincon Mountains, one of the ranges in the Sky Islands; a description of her ranch starts on page 96 of the book. So, your choice could be to learn more about the Rincon Mountains.


Sky Island Biomes Mobile

Construction Directions:

  • Use the biome name cards to label the biomes.
  • Add your own drawings to illustrate each biome. Use the Biome Data Table to help you with this task. Research each of the identified plants or trees from the Table.
  • Arrange the biome cards from desert elevation at the bottom to forest elevation at the top of the mobile.
  • Use string or yarn and chop sticks to create the elevation/biome mobile.


Rivers, Streams, Washes, Watersheds and Topography Center
Activity Choices


Review the map titled, “Southwest United States: Topography and Rivers.” Use the map legend (key) to help you interpret the data on the map. Then, summarize 10 general Southwest Topography facts that you learned by studying the map.

For example, it is clear that Southern California has only the Colorado River as a source of water. That information could be your first fact. What else can you surmise based on the lack of rivers in that region of California?

Review the “Arizona Rainfall” map. Notice the map is displaying the average information about a normal rainfall year in Arizona. AZ has been in drought conditions for the past decade, meaning AZ is getting less rain than the map shows. View the drought conditions monitor at Click to View the Drought Conditions Monitor. In Chapter 14, page 137 of Esperanza Means Hope, Esperanza and Carlos get caught in a sudden rain downpour. Describe the cloudburst event in your own words in a written paragraph. Add a second paragraph about your own experiences with sudden and violent rainy weather in Arizona.


Review the maps showing Arizona watersheds. Watch the interactive clipabout watersheds at the URL below:

Click to watch a video about Watersheds

Choose one watershed system and write a report about it.  Refer to the “Watershed Report Guidelines” to help you organize your report.

You may wish to choose either the Santa Cruz or San Pedro watersheds for your report because both regions were important to Esperanza and her family.


Watershed Report Guidelines

Bill Williams  River
Bill Williams River

~Include the following types of information in your report:

  • Visuals of flora and fauna native to the watershed; fish and fowl are native to the area
  • Smaller tributaries (creeks, and/or lakes not included in the principal tributaries labeled on the map)
  • Data about the principal bodies of water in the watershed (i.e. length and width of the rivers, etc.)
  • Cities and/or towns located within the watershed
  • Significant landforms – natural and manmade (i.e. mountains, buttes, valleys, dams, etc.) in the region
  • History of the watershed region (i.e. Who was Bill Williams and why did he have a river named after him? Is an Indian Reservation within the boundaries of the watershed? What early peoples settled in the region? Did any big historical events happen near the main tributaries?)
  • Environmental health of the watershed (i.e. Is the river polluted? Is it filled to capacity? What efforts are being made to protect water resources in the watershed region?)
  • Recreational activities within the watershed (i.e. Is boating, fishing, swimming and camping allowed? Is it part of a state or national park? Is it in a protected wilderness area?)
  • Visuals of the principal rivers (and other bodies of water) and scenic vistas within the watershed

~Report Requirements

  • Typed one page of text or hand written two pages of text (minimum)
  • Cover page with name of watershed, visuals and student name
  • Appendix with labeled additional visuals
  • Self-assessed using the writing process (prewriting, draft, revise, edit, and final copy)
  • Pages numbered
  • Works Cited page (Internet sources, book sources, multimedia sources)