Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

*Click to open and customize your own copy of the Mountains Lesson Plan

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic Mountains, and addresses the standard of understanding how Earth’s plate tectonics form mountains. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of projects.


Prompt students to think of a mountain they’ve seen or hiked. Ask:

  • Describe the mountain. What did it look like? 
  • How do you think the mountain might have been formed? 


  • Read aloud the description on the Mountains topic page
  • Play the Movie, pausing to check for understanding. 
  • Assign Related Reading. Have students read one of the following articles: “In Depth,” “Way Back When,” or “Did You Know.” Partner them with someone who read a different article to share what they learned with each other.

Step 3: APPLY and ASSESS 

Assign the Mountains Quiz, prompting students to apply essential literacy skills while demonstrating what they learned about this topic.


Students express what they learned about mountains while practicing essential literacy skills with one or more of the following activities. Differentiate by assigning ones that meet individual student needs 

  • Make-a-Movie: Produce a commercial for a National Park that features a mountain. Describe the mountain, and why it’s a great destination. 
  • Make-a-Map: Make a concept map comparing different types of mountains and the ways they are formed. 
  • Creative Coding: Code a sorting game challenging players to determine which type of mountain different facts describe. 
  • Primary Source: Examine photos of different mountains, and cite details to answer the accompanying questions.

More to Explore

Time Zone X: Mountains: Challenge players to put historical events in chronological order in this interactive timeline game.

Related BrainPOP Topics: Deepen understanding of mountains with these topics: Plate Tectonics, Volcanoes, and Mount Everest. 

Teacher Support Resources:


Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments