The Physical Geography of Europe & Russia

Unit 5

During a unit on the geography of Europe and Russia, there is one question that generally gets asked every year. Students will inguire whether Russia is part of Europe or Asia. It is a legitimate question after all, because Russia sits on both continents. The answer is both.

The two parts of Russia are divided by a massive chain of mountains that run from the very north to the southernmost tip of Russia. These mountains are known as the Ural Mountains. They also mark the division between Europe and Asia.

Although Russia is the largest country in the world, the majority of its population is concentrated in the European section, the one west of the Ural Mountains. Most of the Russian land east of the Ural Mountains is known as Siberia. Siberia is a vast wasteland of ice and desert. Sustaining life of any kind in Siberia is very difficult.

It's important for student to note that the Ural Mountains are not the only mountain ranges in Europe. The tallest mountains in Europe are the Alps, which span across nine countries. They begin in Spain and stretch to the Balkan Peninsula.

Speaking of peninsulas, Europe is just one gigantic peninsula. In their key terms, students will define a peninsula as land that has water surrounding three of its sides. Not only is Europe a giant peninsula, it full of smaller peninsulas all around it.

In this unit, students will also become familiar with Europe and Russia’s rivers. These rivers are all historically famous and most of them originate in the Alps Mountains.

On this page of, you will find a list of terms, several map activities, and a fun, creative project to help you teach the geography of Europe and Russia. As always a study guide and test are also included.

Click on the links below to open and download the resources for this unit:

Unit 5 Terms

Unit 5 PowerPoint Presentation

Unit 5 PowerPoint Fill-in-the-Notes for students

Unit 5: Blank Outline Map of Russia

Unit 5: Blank Outline Map of Europe's Mountains & Bodies of Water

Unit 5: Blank Outline Map of Mountain Ranges of Europe & Russia

Unit 5: Blank Outline Map of Europe & Russia's Rivers

List of European Countries for Labeling on Map

Unit 5: Map Quiz

Unit 5 Project: Create a Travel Brochure!

Unit 5 Study Guide

Unit 5 Test

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