LAB: Temperature Inversion - Pollution Simulation

8th - 11th

Learners, after identifying and examining the relationship of temperature and air masses in association with smog and pollution, create a temperature inversion in a long aquarium jar. They experience what happens when smog builds up and no mixing of air masses occurs.

Resource Details

Instructional Design
Inquiry-Based Learning
1 day

The Air Around You

In this air worksheet, students will answer questions about the Earth's atmosphere, including the layers, air masses, and heat transfer. Students will explore how the difference in atmospheric temperature can create weather patterns. This worksheet has 10 fill in the blank, 4 multiple choice, and 8 short answer questions.

Air Masses

In this air masses worksheet, students read two paragraphs about air masses, cold fronts, warm fronts, and stationary fronts. They answer five short answer questions about the reading.


In this weather worksheet, learners write the letter of the definition that best matches the term or phrase. Students answer several short answer questions as it relates to the components of weather, severe weather, and air masses. Learners use the terms given to complete the sentences on the worksheet.

Understanding Canadian Weather Extremes

Students examine dynamic interaction between North American air masses and often spectacular and extreme weather patterns that result, explore nature and origin of five major air masses that affect Canada's weather, and investigate dramatic weather results.

Weather Map

Ninth graders utilize several different types of maps to forecast weather conditions specific areas of the country. Air masses, wind, cloud types, fronts, and the pH of the rain is explored in this lesson plan.

Air Masses & Fronts

Students use isotherms and temperature maps to determine wind direction and temperature. They answer questions using the maps

Air Masses

Students discover that when a large body of air remains over an area for several days or weeks, the body of air may change its thermal and moisture properties according to the land or water under it. They use maps to categorize bodies of air by temp.

Air Under Pressure

Middle schoolers compare and contrast high and low pressure air systems.  In this air pressure lesson students describe the effect of the sun on air pressure. 

Air Masses

Students examine the physical characteristics of several types of air masses to discover how air masses can be identified and defined by their temperature and moisture content.

Air Masses & Fronts

Students identify two distinct air masses and the frontal boundary and determine whether the front is moving in time and in what direction the front is moving.

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