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Classroom Weather Station/Grade 4/Golden Valley, MN

“I like to have my students get into the habit of recording weather conditions so that when there is a change they can look at why the change happened.”

Dave Kust
Breck School,
Golden Valley, MN

Why do I need a classroom weather station?
"When you make observations in nature it is so important to note the climatic conditions. To understand the big picture, it’s really best to have a record of what happened that led up to the event and to also find out what will happen after.

“I like to have my students get into the habit of recording weather conditions so that when there is a change they can look at why the change happened. When we pull down a new posting for monarch sightings we look to see whether any weather information is listed with the sighting. This information helps us to learn what kind of winds or other weather events brought about the sighting. Next we find out what the forecast is and then we can predict what might happen with the migration next.”

What kinds of weather instruments should we have?
“Our school is looking into replacing an old data recording weather station with some of the newer technology this fall. However, I find that the best teaching tools are old-fashioned and basic:

  • a good min/max thermometer
  • an understanding of the Beaufort Wind Scale
  • a compass
  • and a rain gauge

With these tools students can monitor the basics of temperature, wind speed and direction and precipitation from our own location, and pull other weather information and maps off the WWW.”

If you have tips you'd like to share, please write to Journey North: jnorth@learner.org

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