Lesson Plan

National Park Service Symbols

Ranger holding an NPS arrowhead and young students.
Grade Level:
Lower Elementary: Pre-Kindergarten through Second Grade
Social Studies
Lesson Duration:
60 Minutes
Common Core Standards:
K.SL.2, K.SL.5, 1.SL.5, 2.SL.5

Essential Question

What does the National Park Service Arrowhead symbolize? Why are symbols important?


Students will be able to: describe the symbolism behind the National Park Service Arrowhead and use their understanding of symbols to create their own arrowhead design.


There are more than 400 National Park sites in the United states. These places include parks, battlefields, monuments, seashores, historic sites and recreation areas. The National Park Service protects these places because they are important to our nation.

The arrowhead is the symbol for the National Park Service. This shape reminds us of the culture and history National Park sites protect. Each picture inside the arrowhead represents something that is protected in a National Park site. 


Print out the: 

  1. NPS Arrowhead Symbols Worksheet
  2. Blank Arrowhead
  3. Coloring Arrowhead


Download NPS Symbols Worksheet

Download Blank Arrowhead

Download Coloring Arrowhead


  1. Begin with the NPS symbols worksheet. Have students follow the directions to fill in the blank in each sentence.
  2. You may wish to then have the students color their own National Park Service arrowhead. Finally using the blank arrowhead worksheet have students design their own arrowhead. Possible assignments might be to use symbols that represent their class, themselves, their family, a favorite natural place or Glacier.

Possible Extension 

Have students identify other symbols around their school or community and learn what they represent.

Assessment Materials

While students are working and as they finish ask individuals why they chose specific symbols and what they represent.

Contact Information

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Last updated: December 30, 2020