The Timber and Logging Industries

A  WebQuest for Middle School Students, WebQuest Agricultural Series by Missouri Farm Bureau and Missouri State University


The world of trees involves more that just growing and being green.  We use trees in a variety of ways, including lumber and  wood products for building and furnishing homes and businesses, and paper products of all types to keep us neat and organized in our daily lives.  We even need trees to help produce the world's supply of oxygen for us to breath.  Whether you like it or not, your lives are closely tied to our tall timbered friends-----the tree!!!!!  

In this WebQuest, you will visit the world of Forestry Management which includes the care and growing of trees and harvesting or cutting of trees. Complete all of the activities and enjoy your trip. 

Follow each of the steps listed below.  Make sure you visit all of the websites and complete the student activity page.

Step 1: Visit these web-sites:

Step 2. View these sawmills and look at pictures from a Missouri Sawmill

Step 3.  Using a map of the United States label the National and State Forest in your state and those bordering it.   Remember, you may have to revisit the above web links to complete this activity.  

Step 4.  Next, using the map you just completed, pick a state and forest to research as per your teacher's instructions.  This project can be on a forest in your state or another one depending on how many students are in your class.  Include the following items in your research and complete a 3 page report, that along with your U.S. Forestry Map, will make up your presentation to the class. 

  • Forest Conservation , Preservation, History and Management

  • Timber and Silviculture, TSI practices

  •  Harvesting /Logging/Transporting Operations   

  • Sawmill Types and Operations

  •  Logging Sources, (Private Land Owners, State or National Forests. Remember, some forests are protected from timber harvesting by law).

  • Timber/Lumber Industries in you chosen state, (paper mills, furniture , flooring materials, wood products used in buildings, 

Step 5:  Give a 5-minute oral presentation to the class pertaining to your findings. Include important facts and dates that are relevant to the forests in your chosen state.

Step 6:  Review the Student Activity page.


You now know that the History and Importance of the Timber and Logging Industry in the United States has been closely tied with our country's culture and development.   

Rubric for 5 Projects


10 pts.

8 pts.

6 pts.

0 pts.

Map of the U.S./Forests

Student has the required states and at  least 1 forest area in each state Student has the required states, but  lacks up to 3 forest areas Student had most of the required states but, lacks up to 5  forest areas Student showed little or no desire to complete the project.  Less than half of the states and forest present.
3 page Report and Class Presentation Final draft of report is complete, presentation lasted 5 minutes and was packed with information Report was adequate, but lacked some corrections, presentation was around 4 minutes. Report was sloppy, presentation was 2-3 minutes Student displayed little or no desire to complete assignment
Paper Plate/Tree Ring Activity Student has all 36 rings correct, born-in year and included fire, excessive rain  and drought information. Student had  at least 25 rings labeled correctly   Student has at least 15 rings labeled correctly Student made little or no attempt at this project
Time-Line Activity Student has all years labeled on time-line representing both the tree and themselves Student has at least 25 years labeled with supporting information on both the tree and themselves. Student has at least 15 years labeled  with dual information Student made little attempt at completing this assignment
DBH essay Student knew what DBH stands for, described how it is calculated and how this determines lumber yield. Student displayed a fair grasp  for  understanding of DBH and essay included  most of the required elements. Student displayed limited understanding of DBH, calculations, essay lacks required elements. Student showed little effort on this project

Photos are from Ramona Andrus.

This WebQuest was created by teachers participating in Missouri's Agriculture in the Classroom program at Missouri State University through a USDA grant.  The template on this site was adapted from a template from The WebQuest Page and the original was designed by Dr. Lyndon Irwin.  Assistance for this project was provided by Mrs. Barbara Irwin, M.S. and Mrs. Diane Olson, M.S.

Teachers are encouraged to adapt this lesson for classroom use only.  No part of this publication may be transmitted, stored, recorded or published in any form without written permission from Missouri Farm Bureau.

This page was developed by RaMona Andrus, reviewed by Lyndon and the late Barbara Irwin and is maintained by Missouri Farm Bureau. Please address questions to Diane Olson at Missouri Farm Bureau