Social Studies - 2019-20

WG.4 a - Distribution of Natural Resources

The student will apply social science skills to evaluate the significance of natural, human, and capital resources by 

a) comparing the distribution of major natural resources throughout world regions; 


(moved from WG.7a)

Adopted: 2015

BIG IDEAS


Theme: Interdependence + Human Environment Interaction

How does the availability of resources affect human behavior?

What factors influence how land is used?

How has the value of resources changed over time?


UNDERSTANDING THE STANDARD

Economic activity can be classified as primary, secondary, tertiary, or quaternary. 

Natural, human, and capital resources influence human activity in regions. 

Resources are not distributed equally. 

The availability of natural resources is directly connected to the economic activity and culture of a region. 


ESSENTIALS

Natural resources 

  • Renewable: Soil, water, forests 
  • Nonrenewable: Fossil fuels (oil, coal, natural gas) and metals (gold, iron, copper, bauxite) 

Human resources 

  • Level of education 
  • Skilled and unskilled laborers 
  • Entrepreneurial and managerial abilities 

Capital resources 

  • Level of infrastructure 
  • Availability and use of tools, machines, and technologies 

Levels of economic activity 

  • Primary: Dealing directly with resources (e.g., fishing, farming, forestry, mining) 
  • Secondary: Manufacturing and processing (e.g., steel mills, automobile assembly, sawmills) 
  • Tertiary: Services (e.g., transportation, retail trade, information technology services) 
  • Quaternary: Service sector concerned with collection, processing, and manipulation of information and capital (e.g., finance, administration, insurance, legal services) 

Effects of unequal distribution of resources 

  • Interdependence of nations, trading in goods, services, and capital resources 
  • Uneven economic development; dependence on outside assistance 
  • Energy producers and consumers 
  • Imperialism/Colonialism 
  • Conflict over control of resources 

Influence of natural resources on economic activity 

  • Fertile soil and availability of water lead to agriculture. 
  • Natural resources and availability of human resources lead to industry. 
  • High levels of human resources and capital investment can overcome a lack of natural resources (e.g., as in Japan).

KEY VOCABULARY

Resource

Natural Resource

Capital Resource

Human Resource

Renewable Resource

Nonrenewable Resource

Energy Resource

Fossil Fuels

Aesthetics

Skilled Laborers

Unskilled Laborers

Entrepreneurial Abilities

Infrastructure

Primary Economic Activity

Secondary Economic Activity

Tertiary Economic Activity

Environmental Degradation

Developed Nation

Developing Nation

Landlocked

Globalization

Product Assembly

Industrialization

Hydroelectric Power

Agribusiness

Telecommunications

Cash Crops

Gross Domestic Product

Textiles

Tariffs


Updated: Jun 13, 2018