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Lilleshall Primary School

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Our current  geography topic is  ‘Mountains’. We will looking at: UK and World mountain ranges,  the features of mountains,  how mountains are made, mountain climates and  mountain travel (tourism).




Geography - Mountain Contours

Use a map to find areas of higher ground. Look at famous mountain ranges and use an index in an atlas to locate the countries in which they are found. What is the name of the highest peak in each mountain range? What are the different ways areas of higher ground shown on a map? Investigate contours and what they show. Complete the ‘Potato Contours Activity’ and then have a go at describing what a hill might look like based on its contours.

Geography - Features of Mountains 

Although the mountains around the world are very different from one another, they share many of the same features. Which features do you think all mountains have? Which ones might only some mountains have? Research these key features of a mountain: Valley, foot, slope, summit, snow line, tree line, outcrop, face, ridge, peak and plateau.

Can you draw a mountain range including these key features?

Challenge: Using an Ordnance Survey map, create a realistic model of a hill or mountain (this could be one in

your area or one the UK’s famous peaks) Using enlarged copies of the map, trace each contour line onto thick card and

cut it out. Assemble the pieces of card in order to create a model of your chosen hill.


Mount Roraima in Guyana - a mountain with sheer sides.

 An introduction to mountain ranges around the world


Mountain Climates

What is the weather like on mountains? This depends on where the mountains are.  Research the weather in different mountain areas. Can you explain you explain the difference between a weather forecast and climate? Research and compare mountain climates around the world. What are the risks associated with mountain climate?   


How Mountains are Made 

Research and discover how different mountain types are formed. Think about whether you would be able to do the following once you have done your research. 

  • I can tell you that mountains formed a very long time ago.
  • I can describe how tectonic plates move together to create fold mountains.
  • I can describe how lava flow creates volcanic mountains.
  • I can describe how fault lines in the Earth’s crust move to create mountains.
  • I can describe how pressure from magma under the Earth’s surface creates dome mountains.
  • I can describe how erosion creates plateau mountains.


Mountain Travel

What impact does tourism have? 

The population of The Alps increases at different times of year when the number of visitors increase and this has both positive and negative impacts. Tourism has economic, social and environmental impacts e.g.  more people; economic – more funding, more expenditure on resources; environmental – less space, increased noise, increased damage to resources. 

Think about the following questions:

  • Why might people visit mountains?
  • What are the effects of tourism on an area?
  • Can you identify ways to limit the damage tourism causes to an area?
  • Can you identify who is responsible for limiting the damage tourism can cause?.
All Around the World-North or South?

Over and Around

Think about what you have already learned about the  position of the Equator and the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. Look at a map or globe, can you see faint white lines? What are these lines? What are they there for? 

The Latitude lines run from east to west (like the Equator), and tell you how far north and south you are. They are lines around  (Latitude).

The Longitude lines go from north to south and tell you how far east or west you are. They are lines over (Longitude). 

The lines of Longitude and Latitude are imaginary lines  that you see on maps, and are not visible on the ground.

By using latitude and longitude, co-ordinates for any place on Earth can be created. To make the measurements more         accurate, these are then further split into minutes and seconds past each line.

When researching and completing the activity think about the following skills:

· I can identify lines of latitude on a map.

· I can identify lines of longitude on a map.

· I can identify a location on a map when the latitude and longitude are provided.

· I can identify the latitude and longitude of a location on a map.


Use Google Maps to search for locations using co-ordinates rather than place names. You could repeat the task from the Map Co-Ordinates Activity Sheet and compare atlases to online maps – what are the benefits and limitations of each method?



Top and Bottom

Think about the key vocabulary you have studied so far – the Northern and Southern Hemispheres and the Equator. How are the lines of latitude and longitude used to give co-ordinates for locating places on the Earth?

Pole to Pole: In this activity you will find out about the very top and bottom of the planet – the Poles, the Arctic Circle and the Antarctic Circle. The Arctic and Antarctic Circles are areas of the Earth around the poles, they begin at 66°N and 66°S respectively.  What is life like in the Arctic and Antarctic?

When researching and completing the task think about these key skills:

· I can find the North and South Poles on a globe or map.

· I can identify the Arctic Circle on a globe or map.

· I can identify the Antarctic Circle on a globe or map.

· I can compare daylight hours in the UK and polar regions.


In the Tropics

Where Are the Tropics?

Locate the Equator on a world map or globe. Can you identify the lines above and below the equator? The Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn are lines like the Equator; they do not exist in the physical world but are drawn on maps to help identify areas and climatic zones. The area between the lines is known as ‘the tropics’.

What Is It like in the Tropics?

Between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, the weather is hot all year round. Rainfall can be very varied in tropical locations; some areas have very little rain, some have a rainy season and some have fairly consistent rainfall throughout the year. Look at the different habitats found in the tropics.

Comparing the UK and the Tropics

Can you describe the similarities and differences between the weather in the UK and the tropics? The climates are very different.

What’s the Weather Like?

Using the Tropical Weather Areas Activity Cards,  research the climate of a selected area of the tropics, and use the Tropical Weather Report Activity Sheet to record your findings. Use this information to prepare a weather forecast to present to someone in your family.

When researching and completing the task think about these key skills:

· I can identify the location of the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn.

· I can identify differences between the UK and the tropics.

· I can identify similarities between the UK and the tropics. I can describe the climate in the tropics.


On the Line

What Is the Prime Meridian? The term meridian comes from a Latin word that means midday. The Sun crosses each meridian halfway between sunrise and sunset. The Prime Meridian is the line of longitude 0°E/W.

Where Is the Prime Meridian? Where is the 0°E/W line? Which countries does it pass through?

Why do we need a Prime Meridian? Prior to 1884, different countries based their maps and charts on a 0° longitude line that passed through their own capital city. This caused lots of problems e.g. sailors would need to convert between charts when travelling long distances. In 1884, the International Meridian Conference chose to make the line at 0° longitude run through the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, England. The conference chose Greenwich as most of the world’s ships used this meridian already.

What Is on the Line? Choose one of the countries located on the Prime Meridian and research key information about it using the Countries on the Line Activity Sheet.

When researching and completing the task think about these key skills:

· I can identify the location of the Prime Meridian.

· I can tell you why one Prime Meridian was needed.

· I can tell you why the Prime Meridian’s location was chosen.

· I can tell you more about one country on the Prime Meridian.