Lesson Plan Title : The Forbidden City

Age Range: Grade 9 through Grade 12 (High School)

Overview and Purpose: There is so much history in China that students have only been able to see a glimpse of in textbooks. Now thanks to technology, students can experience that history virtually. In this lesson, students take a tour of the Forbidden City and then draw a map of what they see. Using the online tours they are able to see so much more than a picture in a textbook can show them.

Objective: The student will be able to create a map while taking a virtual tour of the Forbidden City in China.


Internet access

Graph paper




During your study of China's Dynasties, have students take a virtual tour of the Forbidden City. There are several sites that have good ones, including IBM. Have them work in groups of two or three to map out their assigned sections. They should include as much detail as possible in the maps.

When all the groups are finished, arrange the map so that the sections are in the correct places. Have each group explain their map.

Wrap Up:

This lesson could be extended to include creating a model of the city. Students could use clay, cardboard, and other materials to replicate some of the larger areas of the city.