Geography of South America Lesson Plan

Instructor: Kim-Kathie Knudsen

Kim-Kathie has taught high school and college Spanish and has worked as a professional development specialist and instructional technology administrator. She has a master's degree in Teaching and Curriculum and is currently working on her doctorate in Educational Leadership.

Consider using this lesson as a way for students to gain knowledge of the geography of South America. Students will locate the countries on a map, learn about South America, and create a presentation on one of the four main areas.

Learning Objective

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • Identify countries and important regions on a map
  • Explain the differences between each of the four major physical geographic regions of the continent.
  • Create a presentation on one of the four areas

Length of Lesson

This lesson will take 45-60 minutes.

Curriculum Standards


Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products, taking advantage of technology's capacity to link to other information and to display information flexibly and dynamically.


Gather relevant information from multiple authoritative print and digital sources, using advanced searches effectively; assess the usefulness of each source in answering the research question; integrate information into the text selectively to maintain the flow of ideas, avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation.

Vocabulary and Phrases

  • Amazon
  • Andes
  • Atacama
  • Grasslands

Materials Needed

  • Computer or tablet with internet access and updated internet browser
  • Computer with LCD to project the lesson
  • Map of South America

Starter Activity

Give students a blank map of South America and either a handout or project the following countries and areas on an LCD: Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, South Atlantic Ocean, South Pacific Ocean. Ask students to fill in the countries on the map. After students are finished, have students fill in correct locations on the map on board and on paper.

Lesson Instruction

Please have your students read the lesson Physical Geography of South America individually, in small groups, or as a class. Use the lesson's printable worksheet to check for understanding and review the answers with them.

Lesson Activity

Divide students into four groups. Tell students that they have been hired as tour guides in South America for the following four areas: the Amazon, the Andes, the Atacama, and the Grasslands. Review with students what each of these areas is and where they are located, using information from the corresponding lesson.

Each group will make a short presentation containing:

  • Title and group members
  • 1-2 slides of photos
  • Location of area with a map
  • Basic information about the area
  • Tourist attractions

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