California’s Geography
California is a state with many different and spectacular geographic regions. Today we will look at the landforms found across our state.

Today’s Activities

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Engage

Watch this short video segment to learn about the geography of California.

Then use this map to locate the following landforms: the Sierra Nevada Mountains, the Great Central Valley, the Pacific Ocean, and the Mojave Desert.  What natural region that covers most of each of those parts of California? (Use the color-coded Natural Vegetation key on the map to help you find out!)  Using the drawings on the map, make a list and/or drawing of the types of plants and animals that live in one of those four geographic regions.  

Make It!  Can you create a 3D map of California with salt dough, or another material, showing the mountains, valleys, deserts, rivers and lakes, and coast? You can also read more about the natural regions of our state in this reader.

Write about it! Walking across California would sure wear out your shoes! Find a cozy spot and take a writing break using this prompt to write from your shoes’ point of view.

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Fractions!

Fraction Masters! Explore this interactive document from Katie Pelfrey of Columbia Elementary School to learn more about fraction equivalence. 

Leveled learning extension 1: Reinforce your math skills with these pages which offer more basic math problems! 

Leveled learning extension 2: Tease your brain with these worksheets to target foundational math skills! 

Worksheet 1

Worksheet 2

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relax

Melting snow from mountains provides much of the water for our state.  Watch this “Melting” video as a calming way to give your body a break from sitting.

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Create

You will find beautiful evergreen forests in many parts of California.  You can follow this art lesson to paint a winter landscape with pine trees

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Teaching Tips

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Accessibility Feature

Turning on transcripts for YouTube Videos [PDF]

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