Weather Or Not?

Designed By: Mr. Conant

Memorial Middle School

Beverly, Massachusetts


Introduction



Congratulations! You are an employee of a company named “Weather Or Not?”.  Your company manufactures meteorological instruments.  You are up for a job promotion and have your choice of one of the following jobs: manufacturer (responsible for manufacturing tools), graphic designer (responsible for creating brochures), sales representative (responsible for presenting materials to potential buyers), or a community involvement director (responsible for designing educational aids for schools).  This WebQuest is your first major assignment in your newly acquired position.  Give your best effort.  You never know when your supervisors are watching over you.



Task



During this WebQuest you will explore many websites that will enhance your knowledge of the different meteorological tools that are used in predicting weather.  You will also learn what these tools measure. As you explore the assigned Websites you will be required to complete the questions on your worksheet.

After you familiarize yourself with the different meteorological instruments, you will choose one of the following jobs from the company “Weather Or Not?”.  These jobs are: manufacturer (responsible for manufacturing tools), graphic designer (responsible for creating brochures), sales representative (responsible for presenting materials to potential buyers), or a community involvement director (responsible for designing educational aids for schools).   The job you choose will decide which project you will complete.

Manufacturer: Create a working model of a meteorological instrument.  Your model should include a diagram and explanation of how your instrument aids in weather forecasting.    If you need step by step directions click on the resources page of this WebQuest.

Graphic Designer: Design a brochure that displays meteorological instruments, how they work, and why our products are superior.  In addition, all instruments should include accurate prices.
   
Sales Representative: Create a PowerPoint presentation that you will use to sell your chosen instruments.  You should include pictures of your instruments as well as the features that makes these products superior.  In addition, all instruments should include accurate prices.

Community Involvement Director:  Design a children's book that can be used to teach young children about the uses of some of the meteorological tools you learned about.

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Process




Before you begin to learn about the different types of meteorological instruments it is important to understand why we need them.  The first part of this WebQuest will conquer the goal of introducing you to the different types of weather.  If you need an additional WebQuest worksheet click on PDF or Word. Let's begin!



Snow is something that we experienced many times this past winter.  On one occasion we had the pleasure of being apart of the first blizzard since 1978.  To learn more about blizzards click on this link.

Read this link on precipitation and answer the following question.

What causes precipitation?



 

Next, click on this hurricane link to see why hurricanes occur.

What are five events that need to take place for a hurricane to form?


How is the energy of a warm sea transferred to a hurricane?




Thunderstorms are an element of weather that occur often, especially in the summer. Click on this thunderstorm link to learn why thunderstorms occur.

How do thunderstorms form?





Tornadoes are a type of weather that we do not often see in the northeast.  These violent storms occur quite often in the other regions of the United States.  Read the following link on tornadoes and answer the following questions.

What type of storm, if it produces enough energy, forms a tornado?

At which speed does the wind have to travel to be considered a tornado?

Describe how it would look outside if a tornado were approaching?

Now it is time to learn about some meteorological tools and what they measure.

The following site will supply you with a brief overview of some  meteorological tools.  Read it closely because this will be the only site in which these instruments will appear together.




An anemometer, also known as a wind vane, is an instrument that measures wind speed.  Read this link to see the different ways in which an anemometer measures wind speed.  Make sure you click on the diagram of the anemometer to see how you might construct a model.

What are the two ways in which an anemometer (wind vane) measures the wind speed?


Image Of A Cold Thermometer      

Thermometers are an instrument that measures the temperature of an object or location.  There are several different types of thermometers that calculate temperature in many ways.  

A thermometer really does not measure the temperature of something; rather it measures the temperature of itself.  Explain this statement.


Name the four different types of thermometers that are explained on this link.

Explain how a liquid-in-glass thermometer works?  What two substances are used in the thermometers glass tube?

Explain how a deformation thermometer measures temperature?




A barometer is an instrument used to calculate atmospheric pressure.  Atmospheric pressure is the force that the air excerpts on us.  To learn more about how a barometer calculates atmospheric pressure click on this site dealing with the barometer.

How does a mercury barometer calculate the atmospheric pressure?

Next, click on aneroid barometer, read the page, and answer the following question.

How does an aneroid barometer work?

What are some advantages that an aneroid barometer has over a mercury barometer?




A rain gauge is another meteorological instrument that is used today.  A rain gauge is a device that measures the amount of rain fall that an area gets.  To ensure accuracy, this instrument has a scale to calculate rain fall.  To learn more click on the above link.

Describe the dimensions of an official rain gauge?

Why does one inch in an official rain gauge actually measure only one - tenth of an inch of rain?

How is rain fall measured if it exceeds two inches?





Over the course of the hot summer we have all experienced a humid day.  A device called a hygrometer informs us on the humidity level each day.

A hygrometer measure the humidity level in air and other gases.  What is humidity
?

Why can human hair (blond) be used to measure humidity using a mechanical hygrometer?

Today meteorologists have many advanced instruments to predict and calculate weather.  These instruments are so advanced that they can calculate wind speed, atmospheric pressure, and humidity from a distance high above Earth's surface.  Three of these instruments are weather balloons, the doppler radar, and satellites. 




Weather balloons are launched twice a day all over the world.  What types of data do weather balloons gather?




The Doppler radar and satellites are two advanced meteorological instruments that prepare us for threatening weather.  These instruments allow us to prepare ourselves hours, even sometimes days, before a storm strikes.
Why are satellites useful in predicting the weather?

What does a Doppler radar do that makes it so important in predicting weather?

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Conclusion




Great Job!
 Your employer is extremely happy with the work that you have just done.  You are definitely "Weather Or Not?" material.  This was only the beginning to your newly acquired position.  Now it is time to choose a project that you would like to conquer.  You may choose to construct a model of a meteorological instruments, design a brochure that will help "Weather Or Not?" sell  types of meteorological instruments, design a PowerPoint presentation of some instruments that will impress potential buyers, or write and illustrate a children's book that will teach young children about meteorological instruments.  Good luck, have fun, and do your best!  

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Evaluation



On the day of the WebQuest, your worksheets will be collected and graded.  The WebQuest will be weighted as a test grade.  At the conclusion of our weather unit each of you will pass in your meteorological tool projects.  The following rubric will be used to assess the project.  The rubric will be translated into a test grade.

Project Rubric


 

 

4

 

 

 

3

 

 

 

2

 

 

1


 

 

Score

Meteorological Instrument
Your instrument is accurate,  is working, demonstrates exceptional craftsmanship, and your diagram and explanation shows complete understanding.
Your instrument  is fairly accurate, somewhat works,  demonstrates good craftsmanship, and diagram and explanation show understanding.
Your instrument is not quite accurate, shows little evidence of working, demonstrates fair craftsmanship, and diagram and explanation show some understanding.
Your instrument is inaccurate, is not working, does not display good craftsmanship, and shows inadequate or incorrect explanation.

Brochure
All of your facts are accurate,  text  is grammatically correct,
and your graphics and content
are  exceptionally neat. You have also researched and have included accurate prices for each instrument.
Most of your facts are accurate,  text has few grammatical errors, and your graphics and content are neat.  You have also researched and have included  prices for each instrument.
Some of your facts are accurate, text has many grammatical errors, and your graphics and content are not neat.  You have included inaccurate prices for each instrument.
Your facts are not accurate, text was not proof-read,
and your graphics and content are messy.  You did not include prices for your chosen instruments.


PowerPoint Presentation
All of your facts are accurate, your text is grammatically correct, and you import graphics of the instrument, and is appealing.  You have also researched and have included accurate prices for each instrument.
Most of your facts are accurate, your text has few grammatical errors, and you use appealing styles.  You have also researched and have included  prices for each instrument.
Some of your facts are accurate, your text contains many grammatical errors, and presentation is not appealing.  You have included inaccurate prices for each instrument.
Your facts are not accurate, text was not proof-read, and presentation is not appealing.  You did not include prices for your chosen instruments.

Children's Book
All of your facts are accurate, text is grammatically correct, and text is appropriate for an early elementary school student.
Most of your facts are accurate, text has few grammatical errors, and text is mostly appropriate for an early elementary school student.
Some of your facts are accurate, your text  contains many grammatical errors, and text is not quite appropriate for an early elementary school student.
Your facts are not accurate, text was not proof-read, and text is not  appropriate for an early elementary school student.

 

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Additional Resources

 


What Happens When A Storm Comes

Discoveryschool.com

Zeus' Web Weather Lore

Tools of the Atmospheric Scientist

Weather For Kids

Make Your Own Weather Station

Weather Instruments



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T. Conant 2003
Memorial Middle School
Beverly, MA