Chapter 3
The Shape of the Land and
Climate and Diversity
In ancient times ships carried people , goods and
ideas along the African Northern Coast. It is in the
center of world transportation routes.
Geography and landforms
Most of Africa is a
plateau. Mountain
Ranges are on its
edges. Narrow plains
fringe the coasts.
Over thousands of years African
traders crossed the plateaus.
Europeans were
slow to do so. They
tried to sail up
rivers and were
blocked by
The Great Rift Valley- Formed millions of years
ago. Rich soils wash down the cliffs into the
valley. Has fertile farmland. Was the site of the
earliest known civilization.
The Nile is the longest river in the world. Egypt
started along its NE portion. The Nile flooded,
depositing rich nutrients to the soil, and supported
farmlands and a large population.
The Sahara Desert is larger than the continental
US. Ten years pass with no rainfall. A few areas
have animal-supporting grasses, but not much. It
is a highway (for trade) and a barrier.
Disease: Malaria (spread by mosquitoes)
kills up to 1 million children each year.
sickness is
common on the
savanna (and
carried by
tsetse fly). It
kills people and
5 basic types of societies:
Hunting and
• Urban
There are more than 1000 languages in
Some common
languages are
used for trading
and business.
Most common are
Swahili, Bantu,
French and

Chapter 23, Sections 5 - Seneca Valley School District