Cloud Posters

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SWBAT to review the 3 types of clouds by creating a model using cotton balls.

Big Idea

Creating a cloud diagram helps students to differentiate between the 3 types of clouds.


5 minutes

Teacher Tip: This is a review lesson for students to extend their knowledge of the 3 types of clouds.  They will create a poser using the following materials which you will need to acquire: per student- 15-20 cotton balls, 1 sheet of paper, liquid glue, markers. This lesson addresses a few writing standards: L6.2a and b, which cover proper spelling and punctuation usage in a diagram.  The students are creating a model, as well, thus addressing SP2. 

To start the lesson, students will individually recall information about how clouds are formed by answering the following prompt on their student notes sheet

ENGAGE: Explain how clouds are formed.  (Clouds form when condensation collects around dust particles in the atmosphere.)


5 minutes

Students now recall the three types of clouds from the previous lesson, writing their responses on their notes sheet: 

EXPLORE: List the 3 types of clouds below.





5 minutes

In order to make the process of creating the poster a bit easier, students now describe the three types of clouds, using their knowledge from previous lessons. They record their responses in the notes sheet: 

EXPLAIN: Describe each type of cloud below.





20 minutes

Students now follow a written procedure to complete their clouds poster. I help them along the way, if needed. The procedure is as follows: 

ELABORATE: Create a cloud poster by following the procedure.

  1. Draw 2 horizontal lines evenly across your paper, dividing it into 3 equal sections, step 1

  2. Label the bottom section STRATUS clouds, step 2

  3. Label the middle section CUMULUS clouds, step 3

  4. Label the top section CIRRUS clouds, step 4

  5. Write a description of the characteristics for each type in the box. Write it small and near the label, step 5

  6. Use the cotton balls to make clouds for each type. Make sure they match the description.

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5 minutes

As a final task, students answer the following question on their own as a reflection, using the posters to help them: 

EVALUATE: Which type of cloud usually brings rain or snow? (stratus clouds)