Precipitation Teacher Resources

Find Precipitation educational ideas and activities

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Polar ice samples provide scientists with valuable information about the condition of the atmosphere for hundreds of thousands of years in the past. Of particular interest is the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and its relationship to global warming. In this case study, learners graph real data from actual ice cores and compare it to temperature changes. One of the videos mentioned does not seem to be available, but this does not diminish the value of the lesson.

New! The Atmosphere

5th - 7th
Here is a suitable set of slides to use when teaching about the layers of the atmosphere, climate, global winds, and types of clouds. These slides will support a few different lectures. You will probably want to replace the diagrams with sharper images, but why start from scratch when you have a well-organized format and straightforward content to start with?
A little engineering design is mixed into this lesson on precipitation measurement. Groups plan and construct a rain gauge, and use it to collect precipitation. As part of the PowerPoint presentation, learners view a satellite map of worldwide rainfall and learn about the Global Precipitation Measurement Mission. Groups critique their designs and then view a short video about why meteorologists evaluate rainfall. This is a fresh addition to a unit on water or weather.
Meteorology learners explore the weight of air, layers of the atmosphere, and air pressure action through a series of discussions, demonstrations, and hands-on group activities. Enough discussion prompts, background information, student handouts, and internet resources are provided to build a complete atmosphere mini-unit.
Students identify the layers in the earth's atmosphere and describe its composition.  In this investigative lesson students answer questions and complete several activities.
Using a detailed worksheet, advanced earth science learners examine radiation data and graphs. They compare the solar energy reaching different latitudes and the effects of the atmosphere on insolation. The exercises are comprehensive. The graphs and diagrams on the worksheets are a little lighter than the typed font, so you might have to explain if they are hard to read. Otherwise, this is a terrific resource for challenging your high schoolers.
Complete teacher narrative and presentation slides for teaching about Earth's water make up the bulk of this lesson. Embedded within the slide show, you will find videos about the water cycle, keeping track of the limited supply of fresh water, and the importance of using satellites for recording precipitation. The culminating activity involves designing a working rain gauge. Boost the STEM value of this activity by really emphasizing the need to calibrate rain gauges.
Middle schoolers experiment with condensation. In this water cycle lesson, students exhale on a mirror to show condensation. They discuss how this relates to precipitation and humidity. 
Students examine the constant changing of the Earth's atmosphere. After labeling the layers of the Earth, they identify various processes inside the Earth that can cause gases to be emitted. Using the internet, they research how the burning of the oil fields in Kuwait during the Persian Gulf War added to the amount of pollution and effects on the atmosphere.
Students conduct Internet research to determine what causes one of the five forms of precipitation to develop. Students work in groups to research a particular type of precipitation and what atmospheric conditions cause that form of precipitation. Students create PowerPoint presentations of their findings.
Student uses MY NASA DATA to obtain precipitation and cloud type data. They create graphs of data within MY NASA DATA. They compare different cloud types as well as precipitation types. They describe graphs of the precipitation and cloud type data.
Fifth graders explore the major components of the water cycle. They pay close attention to evaporation, condensation, and precipitation. A water cycle kit is set up in the classroom, which learners observe for a couple of days before the lesson actually starts. Then, they engage in a series of activities and view other demonstrations that aptly simulate the concepts covered. An excellent science lesson!
Students examine and research the annual rainfall in Nebraska. They create a map of the annual rainfall in Nebraska and use the map to develop explanations of settlement.
Students examine several concepts about weather in the seven lessons of this unit. This year long activity helps students to gather data seasonally about wind, clouds, precipitation, and temperature. Earth's three climate zones are examined and the chan

Rust Never Sleeps

9th - 12th
Students investigate oxidation-reduction reactions involving iron by conducting an experiment in which they expose iron filings to different atmospheric and ocean conditions. They relate the results to the oxidation banding patterns seen in sedimentary rocks and the formation of an oxygen-rich atmosphere on Earth.
Students explore satellite data and graphing. In this weather data analysis math and science activity, students analyze NASA satellite data to draw conclusions about geographical areas where precipitation might have happened. Students follow specific steps given by the teacher to create a time series graph comparing monthly cloud temperatures to troposphere water.
Fourth graders participate in an activity which introduces them to common types of precipitation. They examine "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" through a teacher read aloud and make a weather pamphlet.
Student use MY NASA DATA to obtain precipitation and cloud type data. They create graphs of data within MY NASA DATA. Students compare different cloud types, compare precipitation, and cloud type data They qualitatively describe graphs of the precipitation and cloud type data.

Weather

2nd - 6th
Students explore the earth's atmosphere, weather, and climate. They begin class with a discussion about weather patterns, atmosphere, and the layers of the earth. After the class discussion, students rotate through four stations to observe demonstrations and participate in hands-on activities. Through experiments, students see the effects of atmospheric pressure, observe wind circulation, explore evaporation, and extreme weather.
Students explore the seasonal changes in Costa Rica.  In this dry season instructional activity students use the Internet to locate science data then generate data for precipitation. 

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