Fill a glass with ice water. In a few minutes, jot
down what you see happening both on the inside and
the outside of the glass. What do you think is the
connection between the two? Now fill another glass
with ice water. Add a few drops of food coloring and
wait a few minutes. What color is the water on the
outside of the glass? Where did this water come from?
Read your notes about the other glass. Have your thoughts
about what is happening changed?
Wild Weather Scrapbook.
Start collecting articles and photos from newspapers
and magazines. Focus on one weather topic, or wait
to see what the wind blows in. Include any unusual
or strange weather stories that interest you. You
may create your own drawings or diagrams, keep a list
of weather events you hope to witness, or interview
someone you know who?s had a special weather
One Terrific Twister.
On the afternoon of March 18, 1925, thousands of people
in three states (Missouri, Indiana, and Illinois)
experienced one of the most devastating weather disasters
on record. This Tri-State Tornado, ranked an F5, destroyed
four towns, killed 695 people, and injured 2,000 more.
Along with the number of deaths it caused, this tornado
also held the record for the longest tornado track
and the longest continuous time on the ground. Research
more recent storms to find out if the Tri-State Tornado
still holds these three records.
Every day for a week, go outside at the same time
and observe the clouds. Record what kind of clouds
you see (cumulus, stratocumulus, cirrostratus, nimbostratus,
etc.) along with the weather conditions. At the end
of the week, review your notes and look for weather
patterns that the different clouds indicated.
The Power of Observation.
Snow is not frozen rain. That?s sleet. Snow
is a crystal of ice that forms around a microscopic
particle of dust or bacteria in the atmosphere, where
it is generally less than 5°F (-20.5 °C).
To look at snow, you need a microscope that's been
chilled way below zero. Anything warmer than that
will melt the flake. There are seven basic types of
snow crystals: plates, star shapes, columns, needles,
spatial dendrites, capped columns, and irregular crystals.
Find out which types are the most common where you
live, and create a sketch of them.
Hot Enough for You?
Make a map that shows the weather patterns in your
area of the country; you can focus on your town, county,
or state. Include the name and characteristics of
your climate zone and the type of winds that breeze
through. From which direction do weather changes or
storms generally come? Is there a certain type of
storm that is common in your area? How much do temperatures
vary from season to season? How much precipitation
Surviving the Weather.
Think of eight weather events that we aren't able
to change or control. Research and write down what
we can do to prepare for each one of them. Then use
your notes to come up with survival kits for the four
most likely weather events in your area. List the
supplies you'd need to cope with the weather these
The Big Melt.
Pretend that you've been assigned to a presidential
commission to study global warming. You learn that
it is causing the polar ice caps to melt. How will
this melting ice affect the Earth? Study maps to learn
where ocean currents will carry the water and how
it will change weather patterns. Which areas of the
world are in danger of flooding or of becoming deserts?
Which big cities might be affected?