Rocky Mountains Facts: Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:04 Rocky Mountains
  • 0:27 Plates & Erosion
  • 1:07 Nature & Wildlife
  • 2:06 Activities & Tourism
  • 2:33 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jennifer Lowery

Jennifer has taught elementary levels K-3 and has master's degrees in elementary education and curriculum/instruction and educational leadership.

The Rocky Mountains are well known for their beautiful mountain peaks. In this lesson, we'll explore those peaks and discover how these mountains were formed. We'll also explore the special features and recreational opportunities found in this mountain chain!

Rocky Mountains

If you've seen commercials featuring tall, snowy mountains, you may have, in fact, been looking at the Rocky Mountains. There is even a major league baseball team named after this famous mountain range!

Let's look past these famous images and find out more about these mountains that stretch over 3,000 miles from the southwestern United States to northern Canada.

Plates & Erosion

The Rocky Mountains are the result of plate movements that occurred millions of years ago. The earth's crust is divided into plates, or sections of lands that often move, though scientists are not exactly certain why they move. Millions of years ago, some of these plates moved under the large North American plate. In the years since, additional plate movement continued the formation of the Rocky Mountains.

Another factor in the formation of these mountains is erosion, whereby water and weather can wear away at the land and soil. Glaciers, or large pieces of ice, moved through these areas carving out many of the beautiful, tall mountain peaks we see today.

Nature & Wildlife

Many national parks have been created in the Rocky Mountain regions to protect the forests and wild animals that are native to these areas. In and around the national parks, there are hundreds of beautiful lakes and rivers.

For example, Emerald Lake in Canada is enclosed by the Rocky Mountain peaks. It often remains frozen throughout the winter until early June. Furthermore, the Colorado and Rio Grande Rivers run through the Rockies for thousands of miles.

There are also many animals that have adapted to life in the mountain environment. Visitors and residents often see elk, black bears, badgers, and big horn sheep.

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