Lesson 5 of 5
Objective: SWBAT predict the weather using different kinds of clouds as indicators of weather changes.
National Science Education Standards:
- Changes in the Earth
"Weather changes from day to day and over the seasons."
In this lesson, the students learn about various clouds and how the clouds help to predict the weather. For instance, stratus clouds bring rain or snow. Cirrus clouds mean the weather is going to be sunny and bright. Cumulus clouds bring fair weather. If the sky turn dark, it may bring a storm. This lesson is important because students are introduced to the different kinds of cloud. They learn how they appear in the sky and what kind of weather each cloud can bring. This lesson is also taught based on Tennessee State Standards. In Tennessee, students learn that weather can be predicted because of the clouds and seasons. In this lesson, students learn that different types of clouds can assist with predicting the weather.
Teacher note: This lesson can be used over multiple days because the students track the clouds/weather for a week. Also, they observe clouds for 3 weeks as a home investigation.
Science and Engineering Practice:
SP 6 addresses constructing explanations (for science) and designing solutions (for engineering). In this lesson, the students are engaged in inquiry-based learning that allows them to use a cloud wheel to observe clouds. The students use the cloud wheel to determine which cloud appears in the sky. By using background knowledge, students are able to explain the weather forecast based on the clouds in the sky.
SP 8 addresses obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information in K–2. Students communicate information with others in oral and written form to discuss scientific ideas. This investigation allows the students to collaborate in their groups to discuss which clouds can be seen in the sky and discuss how they can predict the weather. This lesson is imperative because it is a perfect way for students effectively communicate their scientific findings.
Students are aware of the different kinds of seasons and they understand the various kinds of weather. They also know what kinds of clothes to wear during various seasons. Also, they understand that weather changes daily.
In my class, my students are referred as Junior Scientists. They wear lab jackets they created early in the school year to be worn, during their experiments. I call them junior scientists to encourage them to major in Science and Math related careers. I want them to develop a love for science and Math. Also, we sing "It is Science Time" before each lesson or "I Got a Feeling".
At their desks, students sing a song at the opening of each science lesson. This song motivates and engages my Junior Scientists at the beginning of each science lesson. During science lessons, I call my students scientists to empower them and encourage them to become dreamers and doers.
“I Can” statement
I call on a student to read our "I Can" statement for the day. While using an over-sized microphone, a scientist says, "I can identify various clouds to help predict the weather." The "I Can" statement helps students take ownership of the lesson as they put standards into context. The other students praise the student that reads the "I Can" statement by clapping. I encourage students to give each other praise to boost their self-esteem.
I show students the Cloud PowerPoint to support them academically regarding the various kinds of clouds. In showing the PowerPoint, I am also supporting my visual learners.
I discuss the following terms: water vapor, droplet, and resemble. These terms are located in the PowerPoint. To bring out the "A" in STEAM the students use their bodies to express the terms. This helps my kinesthetic learners.
My students proceed to their group tables when I say "We Are On The Move" and they stand and sing, We Are On The Move. This routine helps my students move their table with very few distractions. This also helps my auditory learners who enjoy singing as well as my kinesthetic children who enjoy moving.
When students get to their tables, they begin to assign their roles: a person to record, measure, and report. I assign the leader who is one of my advanced students who posses, leadership evident in this student. They put on their group labels with a clothes pin to ensure that I know each child's role. Students are grouped by abilities to support students’ learning. I want all my students to take ownership of their learning, so assigning roles permits students to develop confidence in their roles while using their strengths to accomplish their group's goals. All hands must be on deck. The groups are reminded of the group rules. The group rules are located at their table so they can reference them.
While the students are in the groups, I bring to their attention that they are going to go outside to observe the clouds. They are provided with a cloud viewer at their tables. I inform them that the cloud viewer has various cloud images. You should look through the middle of the cloud viewer to help you match up the cloud from outside. You are to use the cloud viewer to determine which clouds you observe outside.
Teacher note: Students need to go outside to view the clouds for a week. They also discuss what the weather looks and feels like. You can place this lesson within this unit.
While outside, the groups use the cloud viewer to analyze the clouds and use the chart to describe the weather outside. I have the groups discuss how the weather feels and how it looks outside. Also, they discuss what kind of weather is occurring such as: sunny and bright or fair.
Teacher note: The groups have documented the clouds and weather over the course of a week.
While groups are sitting at their tables, I inform each group that you have observed the weather for the week so you should look back and decide whether or not it is possible to predict the weather based on clouds. Then they provide evidence to support it (SP 6). Each group is provided with the opportunity to present their findings from their observation for the week. It is important that students are given the opportunity to share their knowledge about taught concepts. This also helps boost their confidence in communicating orally to others.
Students are summoned back to their desks. The students are asked to complete an exit ticket. The exit ticket can be located on the PowerPoint. Refer to slide 8. Students should write the questions in their science journals.
While students sit at their desks, they are informed that they are going to observe clouds at home for a few weeks. Each student is provided with their own cloud watcher and calendar for the month to record the types of clouds that they observe. I think that parental involvement is imperative to students' academic success so I extended this project for them to complete at home. I collect the calendar at the end of the month.
At the end of the month, when the calendar is returned, we have a discussion. I pose the questions: Did the clouds help you predict the weather for the day? Did the cloud effect how it felt outside? Which cloud did you enjoy observing and why? I ask these questions to ensure they understand how clouds help predict the weather.