PHYSICAL PLACE CHARACTERISTICS IN AFRICA

After reading the following, identify the main characteristics that describe the physical features of Africa (the vocabulary words in italics) and place them into the acrostic puzzle.  Not all the italicized words are used in the puzzle.

Africa is a place of many unique

physical characteristics. It is at the

center of the earth’s land masses                                               __ __ A __ __ __ __ __

and spans the equator.  With                                            __ __ __ __ f __ __ __ __ __ __

plateaus and escarpments, the                                       __ __ __ __ r __ __ __ __ __

world’s greatest desert (Sahara),                                                    __ i __ __ __ __

and some of its strongest rivers                                             __ __ __ c __ __ __ __ __

and most spectacular waterfalls,                                                     __ a __ __ __

there are also isolated snow-                                                            __ s __ __ __ __

capped volcanoes, lake filled rift

valleys, and a transitional zone                                           __ __ __ p __ __ __

called the Sahel.  There are                                                         __ __ h __ __ __

scorched steppes and luscious rain      __ __ __ __     __ __ __ __ __ y __

forests; there are overgrazed                                                        __ __ s __ __ __

savannas and isolated island                                                  __ __ __ i __ __ __ __ __ __

realms (such as Madagascar, the                                   __ __ __ __ __ c __ __

world’s fourth larges island).                                                    __ __ __ a __ __ __ __

What Africa does not have is a long                           __ __ __ __ __ __ l

mountain range.  Nor do the rivers

flow in regular courses.  The plateau                                         __ __ __ p __

surface is not unbroken and flat.                                                     __ __ l __ __ __

The Sahara is not all sand, and the                                                       __ a __ __ __

basins (Chad, Djouf, Kalahari,                                                       __ __ c __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __

Sudan, and Zaire/Congo) are no                                                 __ __ __ e __

longer great inland seas or lakes.

Few inlets and peninsulas exist.

 

About 80% of Africa lies in tropical climates.  Elevation, daily temperature changes, varying amounts of rainfall, and seasonal winds create climate diversity and influence the economy of Africa.

 

Another factor that affects the physical traits of Africa is the abundance of resources. Water and mineral resources, including copper, diamonds, gold, iron, manganese, uranium, coal, and petroleum, provide Africa with great potential.

 

Tropical crops also contribute to Africa’s economy.  These include cacao, coffee, palm oil, rubber, and timber.  But the vast majority of crops are of the subsistence variety (maize, manioc, millet, cassava, sorghum) that farmers grow to feed themselves.