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Whitney Powell
Why Weather?
Common Weather
Prediction Misconceptions
Rather than thinking
Rain occurs whether or not we want/need it to. When
the water droplets are sufficiently heavy they fall from
the clouds.

Rain occurs because we need it
Rain comes from holes in the clouds
Rain falls when clouds evaporate
Students think
(Henriques, 2000)
Common Weather
Prediction Misconceptions
Rather than thinking
The H and L symbols show areas of low and high
Students think
The H stands for hot temperatures and L
means low temperatures.
(Henriques, 2000)
Common Weather
Prediction Misconceptions
Rather than thinking
The isobars represent areas of equal pressure.
Students think
Isobars on weather maps represent wind
speed or temperature
(Henriques, 2000)
Weather Maps
& Weather Prediction
SOL 6.6
The student will investigate and understand the properties
of air and the structure and dynamics of Earths
atmosphere. Key concepts include
b. pressure, temperature, and compounds
e. the relationship of atmospheric measures and weather
f. basic information from weather maps, including fonts,
systems and basic measurements
The student will investigate, analyze interpret, and predict
weather. The student will learn about the various types of
models and instruments used to predict weather.

Student Interviews
Who predicts
Weather man
Robin Reed
Student Interviews
Student A:
Thought it was hot in El
Paso because the map was
But though it was raining in
Minneapolis because the
map was green
Then was not sure what the
shadows represented.
Got flustered and asked if
(s)he was in trouble and
wanted to go back in the
Student Interviews
Student B:
Took awhile to answer
Stared at the map for a
Thought it was going to rain
in Roanoke because of the
red semicircles and was
going to snow in St. Louis
because it was blue and
blue means cold
Student Interviews
Student C:
Remarked he watched the
weather everyday at
Studied the key
Stated the obvious that it
was sunny in Miami and dry
in the midwest
Stated that it would be hot
in Roanoke today and
would be cold in Roanoke
in a couple of days
Barometer activity
What does a barometer
Atmospheric pressure
Why are barometers useful
for predicting weather?
If air pressure stays the same
or changes, you can tell if the
weather will stay the same or
What do you think it means if
the barometer shows
atmospheric pressure falling
A low pressure system is
moving in
What kind of weather would
this predict?
Wet or stormy weather

Last Minute Engage
What do you think of when you hear the term weather
TV reporters, the news, how weather changes
What characteristics of weather can you name?
Temperature, humidity, wind speed, wind direction, or air
How do you think meteorologist make predictions
about weather?
By looking at the sky, studying current elements of
weather, and studying weather patterns over a large area.

Unit 5 Lesson 5 (pages 276-289)
Students will take turns reading out loud with the teacher
throughout the lesson.
As the students and teacher read along, students will be
answering the questions throughout the reading.
In addition, students will complete the Engage your
Brain and Active Reading prior to beginning the lesson.
As students progress through the reading, they will write
down vocabulary as we read.


Questions for content check as leaving class.
What are eight elements of weather that meteorologists collect data on?
Air temperature, humidity, wind direction, wind speed, cloud types and altitudes,
precipitation, atmospheric pressure, and visibility.
What type of information would weather radar record?
Movement or storms, cloud locations, precipitation, and air motion.
When would the National Weather Service issue a weather advisory?
When anticipated weather conditions could cause inconveneice if caution is not

Post Interview Questions
Who predicts weather?
All stated meteorologist!
What tools can be used to predict weather?
A: Temperature, barometer, wind sock,
B: Temperature, rain gauge, cloud cover, station
models, doppler, wind flags
C: Temperature, barometer, weather balloons, rain
gauge, Hurricane hunters

Post Interview
Student A:
Realized that the shadows
meant participation
Once again thought that the
fronts showed warm and
cold precipitation
Stated that L and H meant
high and low temperature

Student Interviews
Student B:
Immediately started telling
me about the map
Stated that the triangles
and half-circle showed hot
and cold fronts
Stated that the first number
was the temperature and
the second after slash was
dew point !

Predicting weather is
harder than they make it
look on the news!
Student Interviews
Student C:
Was hesitant when asked what H
& L meant. Didnt understand
why it would be hot in ocean
because the ocean is always
However quickly figured it out
when low pressure was at the
Still thought it was warm in
Roanoke and would be cold later
because of the cold front headed
Announced that he knew that
because weather always traveled
from the West East
Recognized that the shadows
represented precipitation
Address Preconceptions
Use of true/false activity at the beginning of class
Virtual lab that allowed students to answer questions
at the beginning of the lab and then review/change
their answers at the end
Discussion questions that allowed students to voice
their prior conceptions.
Fair Assessment
Use of the virtual lab
Students could complete the lab at their own pace
Spend more time on things that were more difficult to
Could review and change answers after completing lab
Discussion of open ended questions

Evidence of Knowledge Gained/Corrected
Pre and post interviews
True/False Activity before and after lesson
Unit Review at end of lesson
Lesson Quiz (ungraded)
Unit Test
Multiple Assessments
Questions presented throughout the virtual lab
Open ended discussion questions before lab and
during book readings
Checkpoint questions located throughout the
reading, where students could correct answers
At the end of each section
Baker, D. R. & Pilburn, M. D. (1997). Constructing
science in middle and secondary classrooms. USA:
A Viacom Company.
Henriques, L. (2000). Childrens misconceptions
about weather: A review of the literature.