Objective: Students will describe several ways the earth, the sun, air and water affect our weather.

Materials: The Weather Game grid, pencils, paper, weather reference books (optional)

It's raining on tadpole in Paris
And snowing on deer in Peru.
There's hail falling down in Montana
And it's clobbered a cricket or two.

The fish in Dakota are freezing,
The rabbits in Florida "sweat".
It's drizzling on horses in Scotland,
And leopards are wet in Tibet.

High winds in the Canadian Rockies
Are keeping the sheep on the run.
What makes all this crazy weather?
Just the earth, water, air and the sun!

These four "ingredients" - the sun, the earth, air, and water - shape all the weather we know. What is weather? It's the condition of the atmosphere - from tornadoes ripping across a valley to the fluffy white clouds you see drifting in the sky on a summer day.

Make copies of The Weather Game grid.

The object of the game is to fill in the spaces under each category (sun, earth, water and air) with words or phrases that relate the category topic to weather. The first space under each category has to be filled in with words that start with the letter "w". The words in the second space under each category must start with the letter "e", and so on. Click here for an example.

There is no right or wrong answers in this game. If a child can explain how a word or phrase relates to weather and to the category, he/she gets credit for it. For example: under sun, you could have "wave" in the "w" space because the sun's energy travels to earth as solar waves.

Give students a time limit and explain that they don't have to fill in every space (it might be too hard to fill them all in).

Score ten points for each word or phrase that no one else has thought of, five points for those that others have also written, and zero points for a blank space. The person with the most points wins.

You can also make this a discussion activity and not keep score at all. You can allow the group to use reference books to help them fill out their sheets. The only requirement is that each person must be able to explain the connections of his/her words to the category and to weather.

Divide class into groups of four teams: the Earth Team, the Sun Team, the Water Team, and the Air Team. Have each team make a collage composed of drawings, articles cut from newspapers and photographs cut from magazines about how their weather marker affects the weather. For example, the Water Team might have pictures of clouds, rain, snow, floods, sleet, and umbrellas. And the Earth Team could have pictures of mountains, valleys, trees, and volcanoes.

Make a colorful winsock with water weather symbols as decorations.

Have your students prepare their own weather report and forecast. Have each student (or group of students) select a kind of weather from the following list (or one you prepare): Their reports should cover the same type of information a weather reporter includes in his/her nightly weather report. Have each student or group present their weather report. The student or group giving their report should also give advice as to possible action that people should take for the particular weather condition they are describing. For example: if student/group is describing a tornado warning, his/her/they should advise that audience should take cover in a safe place because the tornado is rapidly approaching and has wind gusts of 50 to 75 miles per hour, large hail and deadly lightning. Partial list of kinds of weather: tornado (approaching), snowstorm/blizzard, sunny, foggy, hail storm, thunderstorm, drought/heat wave, rain, hurricane, windy, high humidity, smog, floods/flash flood, fair weather, cloudy, icy rain

Activity adapted from Nature Scope, Wild About Weather
Grade Level:

Subject Areas:
Reading, Science

SD Standards for 4th grade:
4.R.1.1; 4.R.1.2; 4.R.2.1; 4.R.5.1



Analyzing, Organizing Information, Identifying Patterns, Applying

Prior Preparation: This is a supplemental activity to a unit on weather or the water cycle.

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