Team Member names:

1. GO TO: File>Make a copy.

2. RENAME IT - Take out “Copy of” text ONLY and replace with first names and last initials of each group member, keeping the last part of the name - “Maya Map prediction T-chart”

3. Next, SHARE with each of your group members and ME - pSburger  Make it so everyone CAN EDIT.

4. Everyone in your group needs to go to SHARED WITH ME section in Google and we will move the doc to your Maya folder.


Use your elevation and climate map, the Maya sites overlay for Google Earth and the climate information at the end of this document to help you complete the T-chart.

We will read through the climate information together. Main points are highlighted for you.



Complete the T-chart below.

NOTICE: each group member must provide an answer - please take turns. Students who have been a bit “quieter” go first, those who tend to speak up first, go last please.

Place your name next to the answer you provided. You may place your answer in a different color so long as it is not too light, but please, do NOT use a different font or a different sized font.


Complete the T-Chart to answer the following questions.

Which climate and elevation features might have been an advantage to help the Maya to thrive?  Which climate and elevation features might have been a disadvantage or a challenge?

Geographic advantages: climate and elevation

Geographic disadvantages: climate and elevation

northern lowlands

northern lowlands

southern lowlands

southern lowlands



In which area do you think you would have wanted to live? Why?

Each student needs to provide an answer in one of the boxes.One to two sentences will be adequate.  Be sure to record your name for your answer!


Tropical Wet & Dry

There are only 2 seasons: wet season (summer) and dry season (winter).  Usually the dry season is longer.  During the dry seasons plant life and animal life suffers, but as the rainy season begins life flourishes in this area.During the wet season, temperatures average about 77 degrees.  During the dry season, temperatures average about 68 degrees.  

The temperatures stay high throughout the year because of the latitude where this climate occurs.  Areas near the equator receive constant direct sunlight and therefore, heat.   The slight difference in temperature is enough to change the wind patterns and keep this area dry for much of the year, until the winds shift and the rainy season begins.  

The change in precipitation is what gives this climate type is name.  Precipitation only falls during the summer months, usually from May-August with June and July having the heaviest rain.  The whole dry season usually has less than 4 inches of rain. During the wet season, at least 25 inches will fall.

Tropical Wet

Tropical Wet Seasons don't change in Tropical Wet, so there is only 1 season.

Temperatures stay the same throughout most of the year because these areas are found along the equator and receive constant direct sunlight.  The average temperature is about 80 degrees (27 Celsius) as you can see from the line below.  The temperatures feel hotter because the humidity is usually very high.  Humidity is the amount of water in the air.  Daytime temperatures rarely go over 93 degrees, and nighttime temperatures rarely go below 68 degrees.  Tropical Wet gets it name from the regular rainfall it receives throughout the year. 

It sometimes rains every day--usually in the morning or early afternoon.  The reason it rains so much here is because of the regular warm temperatures, which evaporate water and keep the humidity high.  Most areas of Tropical Wet receive over 100 inches of rain per year, although some receive nearly 300 inches per year. The constant rain and direct sunlight at the equator allow tropical rainforests to develop.   These forests are so packed full of trees the top layer (canopy layer) often blocks all sunlight from reaching the forest floor.  

Semi Arid

The northern Yucatan Peninsula is hot and semiarid. Annual rainfall ranges between 20 and 40 inches.  Semi arid areas can be very dangerous. They sometimes receive enough rain to support some farming, but after a few years the area can experience a long drought (no rain) and people can starve.  Some years these places may get 20-40 inches of rain, but sometimes 5-10--this is why they are semi-arid and dangerous for human settlement.

The temperatures in Semiarid climate depend on the latitude.  They will follow the same temperature patterns as the surrounding area.

The seasonal changes depend on the latitude, but it is safe to say most places experience a summer and winter.  Usually the winter produces more rain.  When the cooler winter air meets the warmer land rain sometimes falls.   Some years these places may get 20-40 inches of rain, but sometimes 5-10--this is why they are semi-arid and dangerous for human settlement.  Similar to Arid climate, Semiarid climate precipitation levels are due to ocean currents.  

Semiarid is too dry to support forests of trees, but a few scattered trees that require less water can be found here.  Mainly grasses and shrubs cover Semiarid land.


Highland climate is the climate of 'high' 'land'.  So, this climate is found in high mountain areas. There are no seasons in Highland climate. Any seasonal differences would only be felt at low elevations, near the bottom of a mountain.  The reason mountains need their own climate type is because the "climate" changes as you move up the mountain. 

At the base (bottom) of a mountain it might be 80 degrees and sunny, but as you climb the mountain it will get colder and be rainy.  As you keep climbing, it might be snowy and freezing cold.  In fact, the temperature drops about 3 degrees every 1000 feet in elevation as you move up a mountain.  So, the temperatures in Highland depends on the elevation.

The amount of precipitation in Highland climate depends on the elevation.  Sometimes the land around the base of a mountain is dry, but snow may cover the top of a mountain.   The level of precipitation in a Highland climate depends on the elevation you want to measure.

The type of vegetation that grows in Highland also depends on the elevation.  At the base (bottom) of the mountain the vegetation will be the same as the surrounding climate type.  So, a mountain in the rainforest will have rainforest at the base.  As you move up in elevation it will change to plants that can survive colder weather, eventually there will be no vegetation at very high elevations.