A few years ago (when I was teaching third grade) our state standards for Science and Social Studies both included landforms.
It didn’t take long for me to have tons of landform activities since we had to hit those standards with two subjects. At that time we also had a basal reading series that we had to use and it had landform related stories so I just moved those stories to our landform theme week. It just made more sense to do it all together! #right
One thing I discovered is just how fascinated students were in learning about all the shapes of the earth and how some were formed. So, let me help you with some lessons and resources that will save you oodles of time.
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Lessons about the States
One thing I really worked on with my third graders was learning the states of the USA. We completed map activities weekly and labeled those maps with rivers and oceans and state abbreviations. When I started creating an Escape Room about landforms I made sure to add some information into it – about states!
One task of this Escape Room is to identify landforms and then locate one on a USA map. That leads to a lock code to open the first box.
In the second task, students complete math problems and use a clue to go back to the map for the lock code. For the third task, students read postcards that tell about visiting certain landforms and places in the USA and that leads to the last lock code.
It is such a fun event and students love it! I asked for quotes from one class and got this:
“This was like an adventure!”
STEM Challenge- Yes, Please!
One of the first challenges my third graders completed in the STEM lab was about landforms. They were able to choose from an array of materials with the task of creating a scene that uses many landforms. The landforms must be labeled and resemble the real thing.
This challenge was a big hit- especially since I timed it to occur right at the end of the classroom studies about the topic. By the way, this STEM Challenge is part of the Escape Room or can be purchased separately.
Task Cards, Anyone?
Here is a perfect way to practice and assess the understanding of each landform. If your students need more practice before trying the STEM Challenge these cards will work great!
The set includes 52 task cards that ask students to identify landforms with multiple choice answers and short answers, identify landforms in a photo, and identify famous landmarks. So much fun!
What about Reading?
I was lucky to have stories to add to our study of landforms. These were already in our reader, but what if your reading curriculum doesn’t have stories to match this study? I have you covered, of course!
My Print and Read series is so easy to use. There are 4 reading passages in two levels (3rd-5th grade) and each has a response section with basic comprehension questions or tasks. I also add a sprinkling of text features throughout these resources.
This printable resource is also available in a digital format! This version has the printable files and Google Slides with text boxes for students to use with personal devices!
Links for You!
Have you started using boom cards yet? No printing, no laminating, no cutting out. And they are self-checking! This digital task card set is perfect for extending your study of landforms!
No matter which one you try – your students will enjoy their study of landforms! Maybe, try them all!