Activity 7: Landforms Review

Quetza Azteca



Landforms are features that cover the surface of Earth. This activity uses a memory match game to help students memorize the landform shape, with its name and the process that formed it.

Instructional Method: Game

Goal: To use all information about landforms to play the classic memory game.

Objectives: Students will be able to:

  • Match a landform to the process that formed it.
  • Match a picture of a landform with its name.
  • Describe the climate or environment that created the landform


Preparation: 30 min - 2 hr.
Game: 45 min.
Discussion: 15 min.

Materials Needed:

  • Landform Cards PDF
  • A large room
  • A chalkboard
  • A bell or buzzer
  • Note paper for each student


alluvial fan
coral reef



Use information from other landform activities to play this game. This is the culminating activity for this unit.

Instructional Procedures:

  1. Download the Landforms Cards PDF file listed under materials.This has National Park photos of each landform.
  2. Push desks and chairs into a large square around the outside of the room or find an open space outside or gym.
  3. Place cards on floor face down in the middle of the square forming a large matrix. This is just like a memory or match game.
  4. Divide students evenly into four groups.
  5. Locate each group at a corner of the square.
  6. Within each group designate team positions. Each team has one leader (the person who stays at the corner receiving information from the field note specialist and sending searchers to collect the matches), two searchers (the people who look for matches and report it to the team leader who will help to organize match decisions), and one field note specialist (the person who uses class notes from the lecture to determine which process is associated with each landform). The remaining students in the group are field assistants. The field assistants will be doing most of the work as explained later.
  7. The searchers can travel anywhere along the two sides of the square from which their corner is located. The rest of the team must stay in the corner.
  8. No more than four cards may be turned over at a time. This means that the two searchers consult their group on which card to turn. Once the card is turned they scan the other cards and determine matches or remember where the other cards are located. All teams turn their cards at the same time.
  9. When a searcher group has found a match, the field assistants will present the group's findings to the class. They run to the front of the room and ring a bell. When the bell is heard the game is paused. The assistants go grab the matching cards and present the match to the class, stating what landform it is and what processes formed it.
  10. Then the field assistants draw a sketch of the landform (using the photo if they like) and with arrows draw in the process of deposition, erosion or tectonic movement. After the information is presented, the rest of the class is to note this information down on their landforms check-off list. The bell is then rung again and the game continues.
  11. Once all the cards are collected the game is done. For an extension you can perform the steps below (see Extension).


Have students discuss in groups the different landforms and how they were formed. Make associations with the card they had chosen and other landforms or processes. Make sure they can consult their group when giving the presentation and before the presentation.


Have students locate on a map the location where the landform they have to discuss or the process they have to discuss is found, i.e. a sand dune would be found in the desert and can be found in the American southwest, Africa, China, etc.


  1. Once all the cards are matched and all the information is presented to the class, place all the cards randomly back on the floor.
  2. Have each student select a card. The card they select will be the topic of information they will present to the class. Using the card they will describe the type of erosion or landform associated with the card they selected. The information does not have to be the exact presentation as before.
  3. Much of the information will be repetitive from card to card. Inform students that the same process that may have formed one landform can possibly form other landforms. Encourage students to use the notes they wrote down during the game to make relationships with other landforms and processes in their presentation.
  4. Encourage discussion among members of the same team to help each student if they are having problems. Do encourage the presenter student to speak for the group at that time.

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Last updated: February 24, 2015

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