Topography Lesson Plan

Instructor: Tammy Galloway

Tammy teaches business courses at the post-secondary and secondary level and has a master's of business administration in finance.

Students will learn why and how the earth's surface changes constantly and overtime. They will participate in a fun activity by reshaping a man-made surface of sand. Prior to the activity, they will watch a video and answer discussion questions.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define topography
  • identify factors that reshape topography
  • discuss how those factors affect topography

Length

60 minutes

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.6-8.4

Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 6-8 texts and topics.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.6-8.5

Analyze the structure an author uses to organize a text, including how the major sections contribute to the whole and to an understanding of the topic.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.6-8.7

Integrate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text with a version of that information expressed visually (e.g., in a flowchart, diagram, model, graph, or table).

Materials

Instructions

  • Begin by asking students if they live near mountains, a pond, lake, hill or cliff.
  • Allow students to respond, then ask those that do to describe any adventures they've had on these earth's surfaces.
  • Afterwards, explain that those surfaces are considered topography, and we'll learn more about it in this lesson.
  • Distribute a copy of the What Is Topography and How Is Topography Reshaped? lesson, play the video, pause at 02:06, then start the following discussion:
    • Define and explain mechanical weathering.
    • Describe mechanical weathering that you've witnessed in your area.
    • List triggers of mechanical weathering.
    • How is mechanical weathering different from chemical weathering?
    • What type of elements cause chemical weathering?
    • Explain how climate changes impact weathering.
  • Now restart the video, play until the end and pose these discussion points:
    • How does erosion occur?
    • Have you observed erosion? If so, explain.
    • Define sediment.
    • Explain the deposition of sediment.
    • What is a tsunami? Explain how it can reshape topography.
    • Can the factors that affect topography change its shape slow or fast? Explain.
  • Answer any remaining questions then show the lesson quiz and require students to complete in pairs to demonstrate learning.

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