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The Five Themes. 1. Location 2. Place 3. Human-environment Interaction 4. Movement 5. Region. Kon-Tiki.

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The Five Themes

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The Five Themes

1. Location

2. Place

3. Human-environment


4. Movement

5. Region



In 1947, Norwegian Thor Heyerdahl and 5 crew members traveled over 4,300 miles from South America to French Polynesia in 101 days to help prove that not only peoples from Asia could have helped populate the islands. The raft was named Kon-Tiki after a legendary seafaring and sun king of both Inca and Polynesian traditions.

  • Places do not exist in isolation.
    • Interconnectedness of the world - places change over time.
      • “globalization” “The World is Flat”
    • People, goods & ideas move from place to place.
      • Diffusion of ideas, the migration of people
  • Examples
    • Immigration from Latin America to US.
    • War in Iraq (troops, supplies, ideas, people)
    • Goods – we move a lot of oil from the Middle East and other OPEC countries
    • Where did your [shirt, toy, piece of fruit] come from?
    • Schools and universities(people come and ideas are shared)
    • The Internet: Myspace, Facebook (ideas)
    • Epidemics (the H1N1 virus)
    • Maps with flow lines can be used to illustrate movement
  • The movement of people, the import and export of goods, and mass communication have all played roles in shaping our world. 
  • People everywhere interact.  We travel from place to place and we communicate.  We live in a global village and global economy.
  • We interact with each other through travel, trade, and information flows (email).
  • Not only do humans move but also ideas diffuse or spread; fashions and fads move. 

Des Plaines, IL




  • People
  • Goods
  • Ideas
5 themes of geography

How Places are linked to one another and the world

5 Themes of geography

A map of global accessibility

2009 World Development Report

The brighter the color, the more connected a place is