The tundra is a biome, one of the major ecological communities recognized on Earth. Scientists classify biomes in different ways, but the five major classifications are aquatic, deserts, grasslands, forests and tundra. Each of these may be broken down further into more specific sub-types such as tropical rainforest or Arctic tundra. The Arctic tundra is what we will be exploring in this lesson. It is found in the far north of the northern hemisphere - from the North Pole southward to approximately 60°N in North America and to approximately 70°N in Eurasia - and covers around 10% of our planet. The Arctic tundra is characterized by a vast, treeless stretch of rocky land. And it’s believed the word tundra may have originated from the Finnish word tunturia, which means treeless plain. Alpine tundra is another type of tundra; it occurs high on mountains where conditions such as wind and cold prevent tree growth.