Resources for Educators—iPlan: Mapping the Future
iPlan is a free, online land-use planning game that allows learners to construct, investigate, and solve simulated urban and regional planning problems.
Suitable for use on smart phones, tablets, Chromebooks, and laptops, the game allows learners to explore the impacts of land-use decisions in their own local contexts.
The system uses geospatial data, ecological and economic models, and optimization routines to transform any location in the contiguous United States into an interactive land use planning simulation.
Players construct rezoning plans that address socioeconomic and environmental issues, and their plans are evaluated by virtual stakeholders who advocate for different community priorities.
In addition to being an innovative learning tool, iPlan promotes development aligning with many NGSS Learning Standards, including:
- Asking questions and defining problems
- Developing and using models
- Analyzing and interpreting data
- Using mathematical and computational thinking
- Planning and carrying out investigations
- Constructing explanations and designing solutions
- Engaging in argument from evidence
- Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email us.
If you're interested in using iPlan with students either in or out of school:
Mass Audubon works with the Epistemic Analytics group at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, which developed the land-use planning educational iPlan: Mapping the Future tool with funding from the National Science Foundation.