Product Profile

The History of Population Growth (People & the Planet unit)



This product is an individual unit from the middle school curriculum People and the Planet. The unit includes a student background reading, four lesson plans, and summative assessment. Scroll down to see the list lessons plans and readings included in the unit. Purchase the unit now and you’ll immediately receive the unit as a PDF.

Note: If you’re planning to purchase People and the Planet or have already done so, you don’t need to purchase this unit as it is included within the larger People and the Planet curriculum.

Other People and the Planet units include: Air Pollution and Solid Waste; Land Resources; Our Global Family; Population Concepts; Sustainable Future; Water Resources.

SKU: P&P_History Category:


The following are included with the purchase of the unit:

Lesson Plans:

  • World Population: A Visual History – Students watch the video, World Population, and analyze trends in human population over the last 2,000 years.
  • Oh, How We’ve Grown! – Students experience the changing pace of population growth by actively simulating the Earth’s population growth over a 500-year span and then creating a timeline that visually depicts the population doubling through history.
  • Timeline to 8 Billion – Students research historical events related to food and agriculture, medicine, and science and technology and determine which events they deem to have been the most impactful in causing population growth.
  • Population Future – Students interpret a graph showing global population projections through 2100, then create gridded bar graphs to represent the relative size of different regions’ populations for different years (past and future).

Background Reading:

  • The History of Us – Most human population growth has happened in the past 200 years. Students learn about historic events that impacted population size and discover how and where our numbers are projected to change in the future. Glossary included.

Summative Assessment:

  • Once Upon a Time on a Popular Planet – Students write and illustrate a children’s book that uses narrative to teach their elementary school peers about key events in population history and projections for the future. Rubric included.