Kids and Community

Encourage Future Generations of Planners

Check out our resources for teaching kids about planning and engaging them directly in planning:


Metropolis is a curriculum developed by John Martoni, a third-grade teacher and planner. It was designed as a standards-based, interdisciplinary unit of study for grades 3-6 (though it could be adapted for any grade level). Packed with illustrations and exercises, it is intended for use by elementary classroom teachers and other adults who seek to expose children to a variety of urban forms from around the world. The city elements presented in the lessons are edges, districts, public spaces, landmarks, and transportation. These elements provide an organizing mechanism for children to design their own ideal cities.

The lessons increase students' awareness of planning issues such as sustainability and sprawl, while giving them an opportunity to express their heritage, interests, and ideas using a creative design process.

In addition, Metropolis is a multidisciplinary curriculum that embeds language arts, mathematics, health, art, science, and social studies throughout the unit. It can be a stand-alone unit or used for teaching a neighborhood improvement curriculum.

Download the full curriculum

Download individual sections

Neighborhood Scavenger Hunt

How much do you really know about the place where you live?

Every community is special and has a story to tell. This scavenger hunt gives you fun ways to begin exploring the different pieces that make-up your community. By putting these pieces together, you might even learn some of your town's secrets!

Each item asks you to do something or find something in your town. There are many different ways to get the stuff and information you need. Some of the things asked for are specific, like restaurant menus, interviews, crayon rubbings, or pictures (that means photographs or your own drawings). With other, you can be as creative as you like.

Download the scrapbook

More About City Planning

Planners do three main things:

  • Help to create communities of lasting value
  • Offer better choices for where and how people work and live
  • Engage citizens, businesses, and civic leaders to play a meaningful role in creating communities that enrich people’s lives

Inspire children to consider careers in planning. Access Q&As with various planners, and share with children what it takes to be a planner, why people choose the profession, and how they recommend students get involved.