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Geography
What Is Geography?



What Is Geography?
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 5
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.74

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    geography, absolute, interaction, Movementis, westward, landforms, dams, reservoir, region, religion, natural, study, supplies, depend, doing, exact
     content words:    Great Plains, United States


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What Is Geography?
By Cindy Grigg
  

1     Geography is the study of the Earth and its features. Geographers are people who study geography. They study the people and places on Earth. They also study all the changes that happen over time.
 
2     The shape of land changes. Some changes are caused by nature. Some changes are caused by people. People cut down forests. They clear land for farming. People build roads and houses. People use the Earth's materials, or resources, for their needs. People need space to live. They need food, water, and shelter.
 
3     Geographers study the physical features of the Earth. Physical features are things like mountains, rivers, and oceans. These features were made by nature. They are called landforms.
 
4     In geography class, you use maps and globes. You learn about different continents and oceans. You learn about different countries. You learn about different regions.
 
5     Geography is more than just maps of the Earth. Geography is also the study of people and their cultures. There are many different cultures on our Earth. This means there are many different groups of people.
 
6     The people in a culture are alike because they share many of the same beliefs. They share ways of doing things. They share ways of dress. They share a religion. They share foods, art, and music.
 
7     As you can see, there is a lot to study! The study of geography has five different areas of study called themes.
 
8     The first theme is location. Location is the answer to the question "Where are we?" We need to know where a place is located. It can be an absolute or exact location. It is a place that can be found on a map or globe. It can be measured. A street address is an absolute location.
 
9     There is also relative location. Relative location describes where a place is in relation to something else. On a camping trip, you might describe your camp site as "just past the big boulder by the big pine tree." Another way is to tell how much time it takes to get there. You might tell a friend that your house is "a ten-minute walk south of my school."

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