Car board game.

CareerStart lessons: Grade six

LEARN NC was a program of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Education from 1997 – 2013. It provided lesson plans, professional development, and innovative web resources to support teachers, build community, and improve K-12 education in North Carolina. Learn NC is no longer supported by the School of Education – this is a historical archive of their website.

Learning outcomes

  • Students will use their knowledge of Europe and/or South America to create an advertisement for a travel destination.
  • Students will gain an understanding of various careers in the tourism industry.

Teacher planning

Materials needed

  • Posterboard
  • Markers
  • Overhead or data projector
  • Optional: Video camera (if you decide to tape the skits)
  • Occupational Outlook Handbook published by the U.S. Department of Labor (Note: If the Occupational Outlook Handbook is not available at your school media center or guidance office, please refer to the electronic version on the Bureau of Labor Statistics website. This website is also a great tool for readers who would struggle with a handbook of this size.)

Time required for lesson

Approximately 120 minutes
Homework time is needed.


  1. Discuss with your students the ways that countries try to attract tourists. Talk about advertisements on TV, travel brochures, items sent through the mail, the internet, etc. Discuss vacations your students have taken in the U.S. or abroad. Ask how their parents/guardians decided where they wanted to go. (10 min.)
  2. Guided practice: Have the students use the Occupational Outlook Handbook to brainstorm some careers involved in travel and tourism. Some examples could include airplane pilot, flight attendant, ship captain, travel guide, advertiser (making brochures and commercials), hotel owner/employee, reservationist, etc.
  3. Make an overhead or poster with all of the jobs your class brainstorms and display it in the classroom. (15 min.)
  4. Independent Practice: Put the class into groups of five. Tell students they will make a commercial or skit to advertise a travel destination to the rest of the class. Have each group choose a travel destination in Europe or South America. (You may choose to limit the students’ choices to a particular region; for example, only South America or only Western Europe. Alternatively, you may create a list of countries ahead of time for students to choose from.) Post the following requirements so students may refer to them as they create their presentations:
    • The teacher must approve the destination chosen.
    • The skit or commercial must be 5 to 10 minutes in length.
    • Students must create some kind of visual aide to show the class (poster, overhead, etc.)
    • The skit or commercial must include dialogue.
    • The advertisement must be inviting. In other words, the presentation should make the audience want to visit the destination.

    Give students time to work on their advertisements. (45 min.)

  5. Have the groups present their skits/commercials. You may want to record the presentations on video. Have each group rate one another on a scale of 1 to 5, 1 being “I never want to visit” and 5 being “I am leaving to go tomorrow.” After each group has presented discuss with the class what was good and bad about each skit. Talk about how advertisers have to compete with one another to create the most appealing advertisements for the travel destinations they represent. Review with the class the jobs discussed at the beginning of class and see if students want to add more to the list. (45 min.)
  6. Homework: Have each student pick one of the jobs listed during class. Instruct students to talk to their parents and research what kind of education is required for the chosen job, what the job duties include, where this type of job is available, and how much money people with this job earn. Tell students they may use the Internet or call hotels, travel agencies, etc. to discuss with them the answers to their questions.


  • You may have students work individually or in groups to create a travel brochure for their destination instead of (or in addition to) creating a skit or commercial.
  • If it’s possible, have a speaker from the travel and tourism industry come in to talk to the class. This modification would add time to the lesson.

North Carolina curriculum alignment

Social Studies (2003)

Grade 6

  • Goal 1: The learner will use the five themes of geography and geographic tools to answer geographic questions and analyze geographic concepts.
    • Objective 1.01: Create maps, charts, graphs, databases, and models as tools to illustrate information about different people, places and regions in South America and Europe.

  • North Carolina Essential Standards
    • Guidance (2010)
      • Progressing

        • P.CR.1 Understand the meaning and importance of career self-awareness and career goals. P.CR.1.1 Explain how personal skills, interests, and abilities relate to current career plans. P.CR.1.2 Develop a competency plan in your chosen career areas. P.CR.1.3...
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