World Hemispheres Lesson Plan

Instructor: Heather Jenkins

Heather has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in special education. She was a public school teacher and administrator for 11 years.

If you're teaching your class about geography, consider using this lesson on hemispheres. Let your students explore with clay, use your classroom as a giant-sized map, and develop skits and songs as they learn about the four hemispheres.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of the lesson, students will be able to:

  • identify and locate the four hemispheres of the earth on a map/globe
  • locate the equator, prime meridian, and antimeridian on a map/globe and describe their roles in dividing the earth into hemispheres
  • describe characteristics of each hemisphere


60-90 minutes (plus additional time for extension activities)

Curriculum Standards


Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.


Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.


  • clay
  • popsicle sticks


  • Give each student a ball of clay and a popsicle stick. Ask them to figure out how many different ways they can cut the ball in half. Have the students show and discuss how they completed the task.
  • Inform the students that just like the ball of clay, we can divide the earth in half in different ways.
  • Read the lesson Four Hemispheres of the World: Definition and Map with the class.
  • Discuss the following questions:
    • What is a hemisphere?
    • What are the four hemispheres on Earth? Can you use your clay ball to demonstrate the earth being divided into the four hemispheres? Demonstrate this for the students, if necessary.
    • What imaginary lines divide the earth into four hemispheres? Where are they located?
    • Describe the characteristics of each hemisphere. What continents and oceans are located in them? Are there any interesting facts about the land or people in each hemisphere?

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