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School District:Brookings
Unit of Study Title:Weather Around Us
Grade Level:3-5
Time Frame:6 weeks
Key Words:weather, clouds, seasons, air
Unit Designer:Carol Thomas
Unit Designer
Date Added:6/14/2002 9:24:02 AM
Date Last Revised:6/14/2002 9:24:02 AM
Topic Area:Science
Peer Reviewer:Patty McElhany
Peer Reviewer

Brief Summary of Unit: In this unit students will investigate the characteristics of Earth’s atmosphere including what air is and why it moves. They will also learn how air pressure, wind, and water vapor can affect weather, as well as what kind of instruments are used to make weather observations. These observations in turn will allow students to predict the weather, stay safe in dangerous weather, and understand the affects of seasonal weather changes.
Students will Understand: •that weather on our Earth is always changing.
•that air is vital to life on Earth.
•that the changes in the condition of the air result in different kinds of
•that clouds provide clues about changes in our weather.
•that they need to know how to stay safe during various types of

Link to Standards #1

Students will analyze the composition, formative processes, and history of the universe, solar system, and Earth.

Indicator:Understand the various structures and processes of the Earth system.
Benchmark(s):•Describe structures and properties of Earth
•Describe forces that shape the Earth
•Describe factors that impact the systems of Earth
Other Content Standards:None Listed

Other Components
Essential Questions to Guide this Unit and Focus Teaching and Learning: •What is air?
•How do people use air?
•Why does air move?
•What is air pressure?
•How can you find wind speed and direction?
•How would you define the term wind?
•How do you think people first discovered they could put wind to
•What are some ways to compare snowflakes?
•What can clouds tell you about the weather?
•How can you stay safe during dangerous weather?
•Why do you think some people are afraid of thunderstorms?
•What causes the seasons?
Key Knowledge and Skills Students will Acquire: •The students will be able to describe how weather conditions and
phenomena occur and can be predicted.
•The students will be able to describe the causes for Earth’s seasons.
•The students will be able to recognize air as a permanent substance
that surrounds us, takes up space, and is felt as wind.
•The students will be able to explain the use of weather instruments
in predicting and recording weather.
•The students will be able to identify the positive and negative impact
of weather on the environment.
•The students will be able to explain the relationship between the
rotation of the Earth on its axis and the day/night cycle.
Assessment Plan: The assessment for this unit will be a combination of the following: lesson study guides, hands-on-activities, class participation, PowerPoint Weather presentation, Inspiration Weather Safety project, interactive online worksheet, and Unit test.
Learning Activities: Students will be involved in a variety of learning activities throughout this unit.
•The students will read and discuss Chapters 1 – 4 in Silver Burdett
Ginn Science DiscoveryWorks Weather and Climate textbook. They
will complete the study guides as they work through the chapter.
•The students will complete some of the activities from the above
•The students will be paired with a partner and complete a PowerPoint
presentation identifying the positive and negative impact of the
weather on our environment.
•The students will complete an Inspiration webbing showing 3 ways to
stay safe during a flash flood, a lightning storm, and a tornado.
•The students will complete one interactive online worksheet during
the unit.
•The students will play “Jeopardy” to prepare for the Unit test.
•The students will complete the Unit test over weather.
Notes:None Listed
Internet Resource Link:

Adapted from the the work of Jay McTighe and Grant Wiggins. Understanding by
Design. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Alexandria, VA. 1998.

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