The Hoover Dam

Contributor: Samantha Penna. Lesson ID: 12041

Have you ever seen a building being built and watched the big machines and trucks and tools the builders use? Beavers build dams without those tools, but nothing like the Hoover Dam and what it does!


United States

learning style
personality style
Grade Level
Primary (K-2)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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What are beavers good at building?

Beavers are excellent at building dams.

Dams keep water from moving from one section of a waterway to another. People build dams, too! The Hoover Dam is located on the border of Arizona and Nevada. The dam can be found on the Colorado River in the Black Canyon. This seven-hundred-and-twenty-six-foot tall dam is used to protect areas of Arizona and Nevada from flooding. It is also used to control where the river flows and to create electricity using spinning turbines. In this lesson, you will learn about how this huge dam was created and what it is made of.

Hoover Dam

Henry J. Kaiser and Gordon Kaufmann were the architects who designed the Hoover Dam. The construction on the Hoover Dam began on April 20th, 1931. It was built during the Great Depression. The Great Depression occurred when many Americans lost their jobs and became homeless. Building the Hoover Dam provided many people who didn’t have work with a job. Over ten thousand people worked together to build the dam. The dam was made out of concrete. The Hoover Dam was finally finished on March 11th, 1936.

Hoover Dam

Today, the dam is used for many different reasons.

  • The main reason the Hoover Dam was built was to prevent flooding. Before this dam was built, many families and farmers were impacted by flooding from the Colorado River.
  • The dam is also used to store water. This water is used by millions of people in the United States.
  • In addition to this, the Hoover Dam is used to create electricity. Turbines inside the dam generate electricity when they are spun by running water. Most of the electricity produced here goes to people in southern California.

Hoover Dam

Every year, one million people visit the Hoover Dam. Would you like to visit the Hoover Dam? Why or why not? Tell your parent or teacher.

You've learned about the Hoover Dam, so share two interesting facts you learned about the Hoover Dam.

After sharing your facts, move on to the Got It? section to create a plan to build your own dam!

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