Lesson 403: Panama

An hour or so distant from Panama’s burgeoning capital and its great canal, a broad peninsula juts into the Pacific Ocean. The Azuero Peninsula is home to traditions, landscapes, and people different from those of the capital and its suburbs. Residents of Azuero celebrate what sets them off from the rest of Panama. And they are huge fans of baseball.

Learning Objective

Students will learn about the traditions, landscape and people in urban and rural parts of Panama.

Social Studies Standards

People, Places, & Environments: E, H

Discussion Prompts

  • David Yetman uses the phrase cowboy culture to talk about the lifestyle and people in Panama. What are some of the unique characteristics of this cowboy culture?
  • In Panama, they talk about the dress being a symbol that represents the culture. What clothing or item represents your family or culture and how does it compare to the symbols representing Panama’s culture?
  • In the video they talk about what it means to leave your “footprint on the land?” What do you think this is referring to and how was it done in Panama?
  • David Yetman states, “I’m not a tourist, I’m an investigator.” What might be the philosophical difference between these two terms?

Lesson Activities

  • Create a travelogue of the places, landmarks and geographical features mentioned in the video. Include writing and visuals.
    Write a personal narrative from the point of view of an Azuero elder that shows how the
  • Azuero peninsula is different from the rest of Panama in terms of its traditions, landscapes and people.
  • Research either the popular tradition of rodeo or baseball in the Azuero Peninsula and create a note-taking guide.
  • Create a PowerPoint presentation that highlights the Azuero tradition of dancing house to house wearing ceremonial masks, bells and costumes.


  • amphibians
  • burgeoning
  • canal
  • captive
  • devotion
  • machete
  • peninsula
  • scarcity
  • settlement
  • strategic


Lesson Plan