Person vs. the Environment Conflict

Teaching Conflict in Literature - Person vs. Environment Conflict

In a person vs. the environment conflict in literature, a character is struggling against the forces of nature. A person may be fighting against bad weather conditions such as a hurricane or blizzard, survival in the wild including the desert or jungle, or against a wild animal.

Check out these books and videos for teaching the person vs. the environment conflict.

Book Examples to use for Teaching Person vs. the Environment Conflict

Picture Books

  • The Great Kapok Tree
  • Peggony Po: A Whale of a Tale
  • The Legend of Bluebonnet
  • Ghost Eye Tree
  • The Lorax
  • Brave Irene
  • The Last Dinosaur

Children’s Literature

  • My Side of the Mountain
  • Call It Courage
  • Island of the Blue Dolphins
  • The Cay
  • Hatchet
  • From Where the Red Fern Grows –

Little Ann and Old Dan tree a coon in the tallest tree in the river bottoms.
Billy enters the championship coon hunt and encounters the snowstorm.

Teaching Person vs. the Environment Conflict in Literature with Movie Trailers

127 Hours

A mountain climber becomes trapped under a boulder while rock climbing alone near Moab, Utah.



A Fed Ex executive survives a crash landing on a deserted island.



The Day After Tomorrow

A paleoclimatologist must make a trek across America to reach his son while the climates plunge into the subzero level.


Deep Impact

A comet must be destroyed before it collides with Earth.



A climbing expedition on Mt. Everest is devastated by a severe snow storm.



FREE Conflicts in Literature Organizer


Types of Conflicts Quiz

From Bridge to Terabithia

“It was Leslie who had taken him from the cow pasture into Terabithia and turned him into a king. He had thought that was it. Wasn’t king the best you could be? Now it occurred to him that perhaps Terabithia was like a castle where you came to be knighted. After you stayed for a while and grew strong you had to move on. For hadn’t Leslie, even in Terabithia, tried to push back the walls of his mind and make him see beyond to the shining world—huge and terrible and beautiful and very fragile? (Handle with care—everything—even the predators.)

Now it was time for him to move out. She wasn’t there, so he must go for both of them. It was up to him to pay back to the world in beauty and caring what Leslie had loaned him in vision and strength.

As for the terrors ahead—for he did not fool himself that they were all behind him—well, you just have to stand up to your fear and not let it squeeze you white. Right, Leslie?


Which type of conflict is present in this reading?

  1.   Person vs. Society
  2.   Person vs. Self
  3.   Person vs. the Environment
  4. Person vs. Supernatural

From Where the Red Fern Grows

Tell the type of conflict for each situation.

      _____ Billy and his dogs are attacked by a mountain lion, and they must do everything they can to survive.

      _____ Little Ann and Old Dan tree a coon in the tallest tree in the river bottoms. The tree is so tall that Billy must chop it down to get the coon out.

      _____Billy enters the championship coon hunt and encounters the snowstorm.

Teaching Conflict in Literature (Person vs. the Environment) Using Movie Trailers

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