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Chapter 7 - Weather and Climate




Unit D - Weather and Space

  • Chapter 7 - Weather and Climate

What are weather and climate?


Hands-on Activity

Make Your Own Weather Station

Surrounding Earth is a layer of air, the atmosphere, where conditions are always changing. Try your hand at predicting weather patterns by making a wind vane, a rain gauge, and a barometer.



Temperature & Albedo

Even during the summer months, the temperatures on Antarctica's coast range around freezing. Inland, it's even chillier. Discover the three reasons why this continent is the coldest place on Earth.


Science Bulletin


On July 4, 1999, a rare and terrifying storm swept through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in northern Minnesota. What began like a standard-issue thunderstorm soon turned strange and fierce, generating green clouds and strong winds reminiscent of a tornado. In fact, the storm was a cousin of the tornado: a derecho (pronounced "de-RAY-cho"), a type of storm so infrequent and fast-moving that only in recent years have meteorologists begun to understand how to recognize and forecast it



Amazing Albedo

There's a good reason why your summer attire is lighter and brighter than your winter wardrobe. This easy experiment illustrates the power of albedo in black and white.



What's the Angle?

Why is there such a dramatic temperature change between the equator and the South Pole? Explore all the angles of sunlight with a few thermometers and a heat lamp.

seasonal cycle_thumb


Seasonal Cycle

If the Earth turns all the way around every 24 hours, then why are some days longer than others? And why do we have winter and summer? See the answers for yourself—in a matter of seconds.

christina hulbe_thumb


Studying Ice Flows for Clues to Climate Change

What's better than watching ice melt? Building a computer model to simulate the melting! Ice flow plays an important role in everything from deep ocean circulation patterns to global warming.


Curriculum Materials

Building a Cloud Chamber (Cosmic Ray Detector)

Wouldn't it be cool if you could create a rain cloud? Or call cosmic rays into view? Well, you can do both! All you need is an aquarium, a slide projector, dry ice, and a few other easy-to-get supplies.


Science Bulletin

NAO: Driving Climate Across the Atlantic

For centuries, a massive atmospheric system has regularly altered weather patterns, fishery production and animal migrations across the North Atlantic Ocean. At last, Earth scientists and climate modelers are beginning to understand how--and when - the North Atlantic Oscillation happens.


Water: H2O = Life

Every language has a word for water; no living thing exists without water. It soothes the spirit and sustains the body; its beauty inspires art and music.

November 1, 2007 - May 26, 2008


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