Teaching the Census and Learning about our Community

We All Count! (Grades 4-12)

Students create a PSA about why it is important to participate in the Census after guided research.

The Words We Use (Grades 4-12)

With modifications for middle and secondary students, activities guide student research into the history of racial and ethnic identities in the Unitied States, as well as how and why diversity has changed in the US. Students examine the concept of “identity” and discuss their impressions and understanding of the term.

From Carla, a museum educator:


I’ve been working as a museum educator for eleven years now but I started in research, and from that time on I developed a shameless passion for data. For me, a good plan can only be made using good data from good sources. Prepping to climb the Kilimanjaro? Hours and hours of research on everything from routes and climate to what to do before and after. Creating a new lesson plan for Ohio as America or Museum in a Box? Hours (many, many hours) of intense research in our Archives & Library, talking to collections experts and looking for sources online.

That’s why I really appreciate resources that provide us with a lot of good, reliable information like the Census! Its database gives us amazing insights on so many aspects of our community’s past and present. But better yet, the provide very unique opportunities to connect social studies with mathematics!

You can do SO MUCH with Census data and tools. Use this interactive infographic (pictured below) to learn and talk about diversity and inclusion, civil rights, personal identity or the imporatnace of proper lanuguage. Or you can check out this counter with live updates on census completion broken down by state, county, city or congressional district and have students watch the counter when their family completes the census. 

Additionally, the Census offers lesson plans, worksheets and interactives for different grade levels around different subjects! You can find them here: https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/sis.html.

And since we are talking so much about the Census, please make sure you fill out yours: https://2020census.gov/. Remember, we all count!

Do you work with Census resources already? Have you created great lesson plans and want to share with other educators? Share them with us at [email protected].

Posted April 19, 2020

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