altitude: - how high land is above (or below) sea level.

arable: - land that can be used to grow crops.

arid: - a way of describing a climate that is dry and does not receive much rainfall

Australasia: - a region of the continent of Oceania. This region includes Australia, New Zealand, and a few smaller islands belonging to Australia.

Austronesian: - a culture found in Madagascar and other areas throughout the world offering a unique mix of Oceania, Australia, and Polynesia cultures.

cardinal direction: - a term used to describe all four primary directions (north, south, east and west).

dam: - a wall that is built to hold back the water of a creek, stream, or river. Dams may also be used to generate hydroelectric power, to provide water supply to a town or city, to control flooding, or to create recreational areas or habitats for wildlife.

daylight saving: - a way states and countries change their clocks in spring and fall to make better use of daylight. It moves an extra hour of daylight to afternoon during March to October. This helps people who work outside. Daylight saving time also conserves energy, moving activities into the daylight so we do not need to use lights. Not all places participate in daylight saving time.

delta: - the triangular piece of land (usually sand and soil) that is located at the mouth (or inlet) of a river where it meets salt water.

earthquakes: - shaking and vibration on the surface of the earth. Earthquakes can be a result of underground movement along a fault plane or from volcanic activity.

endemic: - A species that is endemic, is not found naturally anywhere else in the world.

equator : - an imaginary line on the earth's surface that is positioned halfway between the north pole and the south pole. The equator divides the earth into the northern hemisphere and the southern hemisphere.

estuary: - the meeting place for fresh water (rivers) and salt water (oceans). Many cities located at estuaries have become important centers of commerce due to the convenience of the port.

exported: - when a crop (or another product) is sent or transported to another country (for money).

hemisphere: - half of a sphere.

hybrid map: - a map that combines satellite images taken of the earth from space with lines for roads and markings and names of landmarks.

inhospitable: - a place that has a climate and conditions that make it hard for many plants and animals to live and grow.

isthmus: - a narrow strip of land that connects two larger bodies of land.

latitude: - the lines that run across (east and west) a map. Lines of latitude measure degrees via north or south. The equator is at 0 degrees latitude.

legend: - another term for a key on a map. It explains the symbols used in the map. The legend may include a map scale, origin, and other information about the map.

longitude: - lines that run up and down the map (north and south). These lines are used to measure degrees east or west from the prime meridian. The prime meridian is located at 0 degrees longitude.

map coordinates: - numbers that provide the exact location of a specified country or other area. The coordinates provide the degrees of longitude and latitude. Coordinates help people locate specific areas on a map.

map scale: - a graphic or line that shows the relationship between the distance on a map and the corresponding distance on the earth. For example, 1 inch may equal 500 miles. This allows users to calculate the approximate distance between two locations on a map.

Melanesia: - a region of Oceania. It includes the countries of East Timor, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, New Caledonia (territory of France), and Vanuatu. Indonesia is also partly in Micronesia. Indonesia is located on two different continents (Oceania and Asia).

Micronesia: - a region of Oceania. This region consists of the Federated States of Micronesia, Guam (a United States territory), Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Naura, Northern Mariana Islands (another United States territory), and Palau.

monsoons: - strong systems of wind, that usually bring in very heavy rains. They influence the climate of a large area.

natural resources: - any substance that is made by nature and used to enhance the lives of living things. Some examples of natural resources include sunlight, minerals, soil, and water.

northern hemisphere : - the half of the planet Earth that is north of the equator. The northern hemisphere contains 90% of the human population and most of the land on the Earth.

Northwest Passage: - a shortcut between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans through the Canadian Arctic. This passage is a direct route for ships to travel from Europe to Asia across the Arctic Ocean. The passage is becoming ice-free for the first time since satellite records began to be kept in the 1970s.

Oceania: - one of the seven continents. It is made up of many islands and countries. Oceania is divided into four regions. Each of the regions include numerous islands. The regions are Australasia, Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia. Australia is the largest country in Oceania.

Pampas: - the fertile land in Argentina (and a few other South American countries). The Pampas of Argentina are known for their harvest of soybeans. Much of the Pampas in Buenos Aires is also used for grazing cattle. The Pampas experience heavy rainfall and flooding.

peninsula: - a piece of land that is bordered by water (on three or more sides), but is not an island. A peninsula is attached to a larger body of land but sticks out into the water.

Polynesia: - a region located on the continent of Oceania. Polynesia includes numerous island nations, however many are territories of other countries around the world. The countries in Polynesia include Somoa, Tonga, Tuvalu, the Cook Islands, Niue, Tokelau, French Polynesian, Wallis and Futuna, American Samoa, and the Pitcairn Islands.

prime meridian: - the imaginary line that runs up and down a map or globe. It is found at 0 degrees longitude. This imaginary line runs vertically through the United Kingdom, France, Spain, western Africa, and Antarctica. The prime meridian divides the world into the eastern hemisphere and western hemisphere.

provinces: - a name for a secondary level of government (secondary to the country itself). A province is similar to a state (such as Arizona or Texas).

ring of fire: - a circle that encompasses the Pacific Ocean. In that circle, many volcanic eruptions and earthquakes occur. There are over 450 volcanoes in the ring of fire. Sometimes even tsunamis occur in the ring of fire.

scale: - shows the relationship between the distance on a map and the corresponding distance on the earth. For example, 1 inch may equal 500 miles. This allows users to calculate the approximate distance between two locations on a map.

southern hemisphere : - the half of the planet Earth that is south of the equator. The southern hemisphere contains all of Antarctica and Australia, most of South America, and part of Asia and Africa.

Straits: - narrow passageways that connect two larger bodies of water.

Straits of Gibraltar: - The Straits of Gibraltar connect the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea.

Suez Canal: - The Suez Canal is a manmade canal between Africa and Asia. It was opened in 1869 to allow two-way water transportation between Africa, Asia, and Europe.

suspension bridge: - a bridge that is created by using a deck supported by large cables hung from the towers. The Brooklyn Bridge is one of the oldest suspension bridges in the United States (built from 1870 - 1883). It is 5,989 feet long.

temperate: - a climate that provides warm summers and mild winters. The temperatures do not typically get extremely hot or cold.

territories: - similar to a state (such as Arizona or Texas). Territories are land areas under the jurisdiction of a government.

tropical climate: - a climate typically having high temperatures and a decent amount of rainfall. Tropical climates are usually located between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn, closer to the equator than cooler, temperate climates.

tsunamis: - an enormous ocean wave that is produced by a landslide, volcanic eruption, or a sub-marine earthquake.