Upper Key Stage 2 Earth Matters
Mountains

Study the physical geography of mountains and mountain ranges, their formation, some famous expeditions and also mountain biodiversity. Children will create a range of representations, including mountain models, a class world map and a freeze-frame drama that will culminate in a Mountain Exhibition for other children.

Session 1 What is a mountain? How are mountains formed?

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of mountains (physical geography).

Design and Technology

  • Select from and use a wider range of tools and equipment to perform practical tasks accurately.

Planning and Activities

Learn about the formation of the five different types of mountains by exploring simple models.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To understand how different types of mountains are formed.
  • To construct models of each type of volcano.

Children will:

  • Identify and name the types of mountains.
  • Understand how mountains are formed.
  • Explain the differences between the formations of the different types of mountains.

Provided Resources

  • Mountain images
  • ‘Our mountain knowledge’ resource
  • How to make a mountain instructions
  • Mountain recording sheets
  • Dictionary game

You Will Need

  • Large sheets of paper and 2 different coloured pens for groups
  • Bread
  • Blocks of chocolate crispy cake
  • Tissues
  • Material
  • Balloons
  • Tin foil
  • Bag of red icing
  • Small wooden blocks
  • Two sizes of trays
  • Sand
  • Jug of water

Session 2 Where in the world are mountains and mountain ranges?

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of mountains (physical geography).
  • Use maps and atlases to locate countries and describe features studied.

Planning and Activities

Locate key mountains and mountains ranges; research their key features and create a class world map.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • Locate key mountains and mountains ranges; research their key features and create a class world map.

Children will:

  • Identify and name some of the main mountains and mountain ranges in the world.
  • Locate mountains and mountain ranges across the world on a map.
  • Explain the difference between mountains and mountain ranges.

You Will Need

  • Map of the world with continents – photocopied, enlarged and cut up
  • Pens/pencils
  • Large blue display paper
  • Copies of speech bubbles
  • Access to books/atlases/internet to research mountains/ranges
  • Access to Google Earth

Session 3 Why do people climb mountains?

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of mountains (physical geography).
  • Use maps and atlases to locate countries and describe features studied.

English

  • Summarise the main ideas drawn from more than one paragraph, identifying key details that support the main ideas

Planning and Activities

Research famous mountain explorers, three historic mountain expeditions and their outcomes.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To understand why people climb mountains and to research a mountain expedition.
  • To research and take notes of a famous mountain expedition.

Children will:

  • Explain why people choose to climb mountains.
  • Research and make notes from a range of sources on an historic mountain expedition.

You Will Need

  • Sound effects of howling wind
  • Post it notes
  • Pens/Pencils
  • Information sheets on expeditions
  • Books and access to the internet
  • Notebooks/paper for note taking
  • Highlighter pens

Session 4 Research and re-enact a famous mountain expedition

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of mountains (physical geography).
  • Use maps and atlases to locate countries and describe features studied.

English

  • Use discussion in order to learn.
  • They should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas.
  • Become competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.

Planning and Activities

Research a famous expedition in depth, perform and photograph a freeze-frame drama that conveys the expedition and its outcomes.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To research and discuss similarities and differences between various mountain expeditions.
  • Identify key events in an expedition, and plan, perform and photograph a freeze-frame drama of each expedition.

Children will:

  • Research a mountain expedition thoroughly.
  • Take notes of key events and use these to create a freeze-frame drama.
  • Take photographs of their freeze-frame drama and peer assess each other’s work.

You Will Need

  • Notes from session 3
  • Cameras

Session 5 Climate change and the impact of human activity on the mountain environment

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of physical geography (mountains) and human geography, including land use, economic activity and distribution of natural resources.

Planning and Activities

Develop your understanding of climate change and how the mountain environment can be endangered by human activity. Find out about eco-tourism and how it can help protect mountains.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To understand some of man’s potential effects on environments, including the impact of tourism.

Children will:

  • Explain how climate change and global warming impact on the mountain environment.
  • Tell you how tourists pose a threat to the mountain environment.
  • Create a poster that explains how eco-tourism can limit the impact on the environment.

Provided Resources

  • Causes of climate change resource
  • Ways in which we damage the Environment
  • How to be an Eco-tourist

You Will Need

  • 3 or 4 sheets of large paper with ‘Climate’ written in the middle
  • Pens
  • Access to the internet
  • Paper for Eco-tourism posters plus poster templates
  • Coloured pens/pencils

Session 6 Endangered animal and plant species in the mountain environment

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of physical geography (mountains) and human geography, including land use, economic activity and distribution of natural resources.

Science

  • Identify how animals and plants are adapted to suit their environment in different ways.

Planning and Activities

Learn about the ways that plants and animals are adapted to the mountain environment and how they can be protected.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To learn about endangered mountain animals and plants and present information for use in their ‘Mountain Exhibition’.
  • To understand why certain plants and animals are best suited to a mountain habitat.

Children will:

  • Explain how plants are adapted to a mountain environment.
  • Identify a range of mountain animals that are endangered and explain why.
  • Create a factual PowerPoint presentation about a chosen endangered mountain animal, which includes all the information requested.
  • Peer-assess each other’s work.

You Will Need

  • Books and internet access
  • Access to PowerPoint for each pair
  • Presentation template

Session 7 Create a model mountian or mountain range

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of physical geography (mountains) and human geography, including land use, economic activity and distribution of natural resources.
  • Describe and understand key aspects of mountains (physical geography).
  • Use maps and atlases to locate countries and describe features studied.

Art and Design

  • To improve their mastery of art and design techniques including sculpture with a range of materials.

Planning and Activities

Create a labelled model of a particular mountain or mountain range, drawing on the knowledge gained during this block.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To use research to make models of mountains and mountain ranges.
  • To create and add detail to a model of a mountain or mountain range.

Children will:

  • Identify mountains and mountain ranges on a world map and their key features
  • Create a model using ModRoc and use paint effects to decorate them

You Will Need

  • ModRoc – enough for groups of 4/5
  • Old paper
  • Cling film, Bubble wrap
  • Salt crystals
  • Sugar
  • Sand
  • Water colour and acrylic paints
  • Small flags (cocktail sticks and paper)
  • Selection of craft materials to make vegetation/animals

Session 8 Create a mountain exhibition for an audience

Objectives

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of physical geography (mountains) and human geography, including land use, economic activity and distribution of natural resources.
  • Describe and understand key aspects of mountains (physical geography).
  • Use maps and atlases to locate countries and describe features studied.

English

  • Retrieve, record and present information from non-fiction sources on mountains, mountain formation and famous mountain expeditions.
  • Explain and discuss their understanding of what they have read.

Planning and Activities

Put together a class ‘Mountain Exhibition’ about mountain ranges, their formation, famous mountain expeditions and the protection of mountain biodiversity.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To use information collected and presented so far and choose how to present this to younger chn in a ‘Mountain Exhibition’.
  • To finalise a piece of work from this block and invite an audience and gain feedback.

Children will:

  • present information they have learnt using a variety of medium for an audience
  • Self-assess the impact of their exhibition and work they have produced and evaluate their impact on an audience

You Will Need

  • All items for display
  • Tables/boards for display
  • Table coverings
  • Paper, pins, blu-tac for putting up displays
  • Laptops displaying PowerPoints
  • Camera/video camera to record the exhibition

Weblinks

Not required, but it may be interesting for the audience to play one of the videos the children have watched on the IWB.