Submitted by: Ms. Anna Marie DiPalma

Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8, K-3

In this Erosion lesson plan, which is adaptable for grades K-8, students use BrainPOP resources to investigate the different types of erosion: gravitational, wind, and glacial. Students will learn the difference between weathering and erosion, and work cooperatively to identify different examples of erosion.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Investigate the different types of erosion: gravitational, wind, and glacial.
  2. Learn the difference between weathering and erosion.
  3. Work cooperatively to identify different examples of erosion.


  • Computer, internet access, and projector
  • Science textbook or other resource on erosion
  • PowerPoint presentation (download below)
  • Erosion word search (download below)


abrasion, deflation, glacier, till, erosion, mass movement, slump, creep, mudflow, plucking, outwash, esker, dune


Prior to the lesson, have students watch the Weathering video and discuss.

Lesson Procedure:

  1. Show the Erosion video. Discuss crucial facts after the video concludes.
  2. Divide students into three groups: one for gravitational erosion, one for glacial erosion, and one for wind erosion.
  3. Have each group define key terms and identify five important facts about their subject. Provide access to BrainPOP resources, texts, and books as needed. Allow 10 minutes for this review, note taking, and discussion among groups.
  4. Have students present their information to the rest of the class and allow discussion following the brief presentations (5 minutes to present, 2 minutes to discuss).
  5. Review information on the PowerPoint for each type of erosion after presentations conclude and allow time for students to take notes for use later in the activity (3 minutes).
  6. Show students each of the “cases” in the PowerPoint. Have students discuss the different possible explanations. Refer to previous slides if there is confusion. Allow discussion of each case (7 “cases” with discussion, 15 minutes).

Extension Activities:

Use the word search (available below) as a review or homework activity.

Downloadable Resources:

Investigating Erosion Lesson.ppt
Investigating Erosion Word Search.doc