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American Forests


6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Social Studies, Economics, Geography, Justice

Resource Type

  • Article

Regional Focus

North America, United States

Tree Cover Comparison Based on Income

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  • This Instagram post shows the disparity in tree cover between neighborhoods in six cities: Denver, CO; Boston, MA; Baltimore, MD; Portland, OR; Columbus, OH; and Austin, TX. 
  • The image is accompanied by a description, which identifies the average income of each neighborhood. 
Teaching Tips


  • This resource provides a visual representation of inequality in urban areas.
  • Students will easily see the difference in tree cover between the two neighborhoods pictured.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should be familiar with the terms income and poverty.


  • This resource could be incorporated into science lessons about photosynthesis, ecology, and the carbon cycle to connect the biological functions of trees with their benefits to communities.
  • History, social studies, and civics classes could use this resource when discussing historical prejudices, practices such as redlining, or the need for community involvement in government decisions.
  • Other resources similar to this topic include the video What Happens if We Cut Down All of a City's Trees, the lesson plan Cities, Trees, and Inequality, and the lesson plan Urban Trees.
Scientist Notes
The resource describes the correlation existing between income level and tree cover. It depicts species richness and biodiversity levels with income using two scenarios in a city. Datasets on income are just estimates and not actual figures; educators should note these contradictions. This resource is recommended.
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    • Personal Finance & Economics
      • Personal Finance (F1): Students understand the principles and processes of personal finance by explaining how scarcity influences choices and relates to the market economy.
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