Ice Ages


Ice Ages explores what the earth was like during these cold periods of its history. Students will learn about the five significant periods and what occurred during those times. They will also discover how such periods impacted and influenced the future of the earth. 

You will find several suggestions in the “Options for Lesson” section of additional assignments or activities to incorporate. One idea is to assign students a specific extinct animal that existed during the Ice Ages to research and present to the class. They could also research and present on a specific ice age.

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What our Ice Ages lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Ice Ages explores the causes and effects of these cold periods in the earth’s history. Students will discover some of the characteristics that define these times. They will also learn about the lasting influence they had on living things. This lesson is for students in 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, and 6th grade.

Classroom Procedure

Every lesson plan provides you with a classroom procedure page that outlines a step-by-step guide to follow. You do not have to follow the guide exactly. The guide helps you organize the lesson and details when to hand out worksheets. It also lists information in the yellow box that you might find useful. You will find the lesson objectives, state standards, and number of class sessions the lesson should take to complete in this area. In addition, it describes the supplies you will need as well as what and how you need to prepare beforehand.

Options for Lesson

There are several suggestions in the “Options for Lesson” section that you could incorporate into the lesson plan if you want to. One such option is to assign students a significant ice age to research and later present to the class. Students could also research extinct animals from these periods that you assign them. Another option is to obtain maps that display the earth both before and after the ice ages occurred. You could invite a climatologist or other expert to speak to the class about how Earth changes over a period of time. One more idea is to let students investigate other possible theories that relate to the ice ages.

Teacher Notes

The teacher notes page provides an extra paragraph of information to help guide the lesson. It suggests you focus on helping students understand the implication and influences that these times had on the earth and its inhabitants. In addition, it mentions teaching this lesson in conjunction with others about Earth’s history, glaciers, or the environment. You can use the blank lines to write down any other ideas or thoughts you have about the topic as you prepare.


The Ice Ages lesson plan includes three worksheets: an activity worksheet, a practice worksheet, and a homework assignment. They will reinforce students’ understanding of the lesson content and allow them to demonstrate what they learned in different ways. The guide on the classroom procedure page outlines when to hand out each worksheet throughout the lesson.


With a partner, students will imagine they survived an ice age thousands of years ago. They have adapted to the cold temperatures and sewn clothes to keep themselves warm. However, they have learned that the earth is becoming warmer, and the area they live in will have dramatically higher temperatures. They now have to adapt to the heat that they will encounter in five years. The worksheet lists five questions. Students must discuss with their partners each question and respond accordingly.


The practice worksheet splits into two sections. For the first section, students will place the five ice ages in chronological order. The second part requires them to tell whether each of 10 statements is true (T) or false (F). For any false statements, students must rewrite the sentences to make them true.


Like the practice worksheet, there are two sections on the homework assignment. The first part lists 15 questions or prompts for students to respond to. The second part requires students to explain how five different things can influence an ice age.

Worksheet Answer Keys

The last few pages of the lesson plan PDF are answer keys for the three worksheets. The correct answers are in red to make it easy to compare them to students’ responses. Given the nature of some of the questions, there may be some variation. If you choose to administer the lesson pages to your students via PDF, you will need to save a new file that omits these pages. Otherwise, you can simply print out the applicable pages and keep these as reference for yourself when grading assignments.

Additional information


3rd Grade, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, 6th Grade



State Educational Standards

LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.3.3, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.3.7, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.4.3, LB.ELA-Literacy.RI.5.3, LB.ELA-Literacy.SL.6.3

Lessons are aligned to meet the education objectives and goals of most states. For more information on your state objectives, contact your local Board of Education or Department of Education in your state.

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Alicia B.

Great !

The work sheets were very helpful!

Kathryn N.

Excellent Resource

I have looked over the materials and the noted resources and am eager to use this lesson in my classroom. It is full of great information and is very user friendly. Thank you!!

Cindy M.

Ice Age

Worked great with my Ice Age unit.