Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Free Weather Lessons

The Weather has been strange lately. Last Friday, there was snow in 49 states. Records are being broken all over the country. The Deep South and Mid-Atlantic have been getting record snowfall while British Columbia has to make snow or ship snow for the Winter Olympics. But you don't have to take my word for it. You can read this recent article from The Weather Channel.

For those of you in the east, yet another winter storm -- two of them actually -- is knocking at your door. You can follow this series of interactive maps to get an overview.

Why all the talk here about weather? We're living through the type of winter that occurs very rarely. Are your kids fascinated? They could be. Talking about the weather could turn these crazy winter woes into a fun science unit.

The National Weather Service has just created Jetstream, an online school for weather with nifty summaries to help teachers and educate all of us. The site includes interesting graphics and a variety of topics. Each topic on the left side bar has many subtopics which you can uncover by clicking on the words. I was impressed by their lessons. While you may not want to read the summaries aloud to young children, you can read them for yourself in a couple of minutes and then use the pictures to explain. There's enough at this website for a series of pithy lessons for weeks.

Web Weather for Kids another fun online resource to try, complete with games, stories, and activities. Here you can find out what makes a blizzard and make your own snowflakes. Plenty of graphics and clear explanations are here on topics that will intrigue any student.

Often, the best lessons in our school room happened when we took time to enjoy what was happening right outside our door and interact with it.

What events in your world right now could become lessons? Have you taught any lessons recently from current events?

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this. We'll be checking it out in just a bit! We've taken a break from our regular studies and are learning about the Olympics with Amanda Bennett's unit study. It's been fun and mom has learned quite a bit too!


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