I begin this lesson by telling students, this lesson concludes our unit on the weather and climate around us. In this unit we have discussed how greenhouse gases have caused global warming and rising sea levels, and the devastating effects of Hurricane Andrew, Hurricane Katrina, and Hurricane Sandy. I ask students if they understand the difference between weather and climate. Some students are able to explain as a result of previous science lessons. I explain to students that weather is short-term daily events and climate is the average weather over a longer period of time. I, then, have students to Think-Pair-Share their favorite type of weather of 4 possible choices - hot, cold, rain, snow. Next, I have students to do a "weather walk." I have four signs, one in each corner of the room - hot, cold, rain, snow. Students walk to the corner of the room with the sign which states their favorite weather. I go around the room and have students to explain why they selected their particular favorite type of weather. The weather walk is good for my kinesthetic learners as it gets them up and moving. Getting students to explain why they selected a particular type of weather as their favorite type of weather helps them to learn to justify their answers as is encouraged by Common Core State Standards.
As is common with Common Core-aligned lessons, I have chosen to end this unit with a culminating writing assessment. Students are to pretend they have met someone who has recently moved to the U.S.A. In a 5 paragraph paper, they are to describe our weather and climate, the dos and don'ts of how to prepare for various types of bad weather, and the causes and effects of different types of weather and climate. (See attached writing prompt to display on SmartBoard and writing rubric.)