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Grade: Middle
Subject: Science

#2674. Weather Opener

Science, level: Middle
Posted Sun Sep 1 16:31:47 PDT 2002 by Tysen B (
Toledo Public Schools Chase Elementary, Toledo, Ohio
Materials Required: newspapers, dominoes, art materials, journals, paper, pens, student roles
Activity Time: 1 week
Concepts Taught: Cause/Effect, Comprehension, Generating topics for Research, Reading Nonfiction

Weather Anticipation Guide

True or False?



1. Weather data can be collected by using a balloon. T F

2. A pyschometer is a meter that is used to measure how
wild or crazy a being can act. T F

3. Changes in the temperature of air are not related to the
weather. T F

4. Weather is the condition of air on the earth. T F

5. Condensation is when a liquid becomes a gas. T F

6. Air has mass. T F

7. A cloud is a collection of tiny water particles. T F

8. Humidity describes how much toxic air is in the
atmosphere. T F

9. September is hurricane month in the northern hemi- T F
sphere because the oceans are warm and the air is

10. Meteorology is the study of meteors and space. T F

Newspaper Abstact
Multiple Articles

Article Information

1. List the titles and authors of the articles and pieces that you examined.

2. Describe how the articles are related.

3. List 3 facts that you learned from reading the articles. Re-write or paraphrase the facts in your own words. Do NOT copy ANY information word for word.




4. Did you read fiction or non-fiction? Explain how you know.

5. Use a Venn Diagram to compare and contrast the information from ONE graphic/picture with ONE
written news article from your packet.

Subject: ELA
Grade Level: Sixth

Primary Standard: Research
* Benchmarks Grade Band: 4-7
* Grade Level Indicators: 1, 2

Secondary Standard: Reading Process: Concepts of Print, Comprehension Strategies and Self-Monitoring Strategies
* Benchmarks Grade Band: 4-7
* Grade Level Indicators: 1, 4, 5, 8

Secondary Standard: Reading Applications: Informational, Technical and Persuasive Text
* Benchmarks Grade Band: 4-7
* Grade Level Indicators: 2, 8

1. Students will examine a variety of "weather related" non-fiction news articles, summarize the basic facts from those articles, and compare how the graphics reinforce the information presented.
2. Students will learn how to identify cause and effect relationships in non-fiction text and discuss these relationships orally through a presentation to the class ( Benchmark: Communication; Indicators 6, 9)
3. Students will use the given information to generate questions for research on the topic of "weather." Students will later use a variety of resources to locate information to answer the questions on their list. They will use the data collect to create a research report and a weather construction that is related to their topic of research.

Cause and Effect Graphic Organizer
Weather Anticipation Guide and Newspaper Abstract form
Science journal/notebook
markers, colored pencils, scissors, glue, and assorted art supplies
newspaper articles w/ pictures and graphics
construction paper or posterboard
access to internet, encyclopedias, newspapers, almanacs, science journals and weather books

Assessment: (These are samples. Please feel free to make up your own)
Participation Rubric for Group Work
Presentation Rubric for Presentations
Newspaper Abstract
Talking Chips Participation Points (2/2)
* Later: Research report Checklist and Rubric

Set the Purpose:
Before beginning, review with your students the possible "roles" or "jobs" they will have in their research group. Arrange the students in groups of 3 or 4. I use the FOSS roles from my science kit to provide uniformity. Each student must have a specific task/title to make management a little easier. Foss Roles include: Starters, Getters, Reporters, and Recorders.
Also give the students 2 bingo or "talking chips". They must lay them on the corner of their desk and "lose" both of them by the end of this activity to receive their daily participation points. Next, pass out the 1/2 sheet of the group participation rubric. Review with the students that you will coming around to mark their points on each topic, therefore , stay on task. Everyone must participate!

Give all the students a packet of the news articles to preview. Ask them guiding questions.

"What kind of writing is this?" "Will someone read the title of..."
"Where would you find this information?"
"What is The Blade? Where would you find/buy one? Why would you buy one?"
"Look @ the pictures/graphics, tell me what you see? Predict how the graphics may or may not related to the articles."


Day One
After the students have previewed the packets, know the expected level of participation, and are settled quietly into groups, please have them read the articles round robin in the group.Cycle through the room and award participation points! Ask very few questions only to keep the groups going and to check comprehension. After all of the articles are read (15-20 minutes), stop the students and encourage them to discuss and fill in the Abstract together as a group. (10-15)

After the students have worked on the Abstract, direct the small groups to create a poster that explains, reorganizes, and represents how they interpreted what they read. Encourage the students to be creative w/ their group poster. Make sure everyone has a part in the presentation. Discuss and answer the questions together as class by allowing the students to present their "data". Students may want to add and adjust their answers on their own personal paper. Correct any misconceptions. (20-30 minutes)

Journal: Have students write in their science journal to this prompt: What do you predict we will be studying in science. Provide support to your prediction. How do you feel about this topic? State your opinion and why you feel the way you feel.

Day Two
Place the students back into their previous groups. Hang posters up. Have packets and notebooks/journals ready. Warm up the students by having some read their journal responses out loud. (5-10 minutes)

Read: Preview and orally read a picture story book of your choice on the topic of weather. Ask the students how your picture storybook relates to yesterday's articles. Ask them what kind of writing (fiction or non-fiction) they think the storybook is and have them orally explain their answers. (10 minutes)

Apply: Just like the story in the picture storybook and in the news articles events happen because something has caused them to happen. Demonstrate this fact by having the "Getters" (participation
points) come up and grab 10 dominoes. Allow the "Recorders" to set the dominoes up vertically. Next have the "Starters" tap one dominoe. Have the "Reporters" re-arrange the dominoes, then have the "Starters" tap the first domino. After 5 minutes, have the "Reporter" stand up from each group and tell what happened to the other dominoes. (5 minutes)

Journal: Write on the topic "Domino Effect is a Cause and Effect Relationship" Make sure that they students understand this point: (10 minutes)
An event that happens is the EFFECT.
The person/thing/force that makes an event happen is the CAUSE.

Effect Question: What happened?
Cause Question: Why did it happen?

Activity: Model how to locate a cause and effect relationship in the storybook or a news article. Explain the these relationships effect the meaning of a story, therefore look for the BIG events in stories. Ask them Cause/Effect questions.
Next, work in the small groups to list cause and effect relationship in the news articles provided in the packet. Have the students use any graphic organizer of your choice.
Finally, have members of the groups rotate out and share w/ other groups the cause and effect relationships their group found. Discuss the c/e relationships as a whole group. Allow time for adjustments. (30-45 minutes)

Journal Write Part 2: Finish the previous journal prompt by asking the students what they learned, liked, or disliked about the lesson. Also have the write about any difficulties they had w/the lesson and how they trouble shoot such problems when reading. (5-10 minutes)

Day Three
Reading: Today the students are going to read and fill out the "Weather Anticipation Guide." This guide lets you know what the students already know about the topic and it also gives the students a heads up on what to expect from future lessons and labs on the topic of weather. It may also spark them to asking questions about weather on their own. The guide is an independent activity.

Apply: As a large group, randomly list as many questions about weather as the students can brainstorm. First ask the students, "What questions do you have about weather? Do you know what it is?"
Refer to the Anticipation Guide and provide the correct answers. Explain to the students that if they want to know the "hows" and "whys" they are going to have to search for the answers themselves. After creating a massive list of questions (at least 50 questions or more) have the students come up w/ ways to sort and classify the questions into research topics (storms, clouds, air, water, temperature, climate...) Finally, have students brainstorm in their journals about a topic or two they would like to tackle and why that topic appeals to them. Also have them write about where they think they will find the information they will need about their topic.
Optional: You can futher group students by topic and ask them in their small groups to generate more specific questions on their related topic. Students will research their questions and bring back the information to the group.
Provide the students with as many resources and research time as possible. This will be at least a month long project that will later include various science experiments to demonstrate the phenomena of weather. Students will endeavor to explain what weather is, how and why it occurs, and how weather effects the environment.

Assessments: (These are samples. Please feel free to make up your own)
Participation Rubric for Group Work <--1/2 sheet you share w/ your students before work begins
Presentation Rubric for Presentations <--1/2 sheet you share w/ your students;
Newspaper Abstract
Talking Chips Participation Points (2/2) <-Students must give up both chips for full participation (no grade taken. Use a reason to reward students)
* Later: Research report Checklist and Rubric
Participation Rubric for Group Work

Positive Compliments Given ...1...2...3...4

Sharing information ...1...2...3...4

On Task ...1...2...3...4

Noise Level ...1...2...3...4

Attitude ...1...2...3...4

1 = unsuccessful 1/4 25%

2= poor 2/4 50%
3= fair 3/4 75%
4= successful 4/4 100%


Presentation Rubric

Audible (I can hear you) ...1...2...3...4

Use of Graphics/Pictures ...1...2...3...4

Use of notes/information ...1...2...3...4

Attitude ...1...2...3...4

Easy to Understand ...1...2...3...4

1 = unsuccessful 1/4 25%

2= poor 2/4 50%
3= fair 3/4 75%
4= successful 4/4 100%

Score __________