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The Weather


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The authors
Team Digital

Basics on the topic The Weather


How is the weather?

If you look out the window now, what is the weather like outside right now? Do you see the sun and blue sky or dark clouds? Is it raining or even snowing? The weather can be very different. This video explores the concept weather in a developmentally appropriate way to children in elementary school. Various weather characteristics are used for this. You will learn in science class that the weather is created by an interaction of sun, water and air**.

Interaction of sun, water, air

The sun, water in its various forms and air are closely linked.

  • The earth rotates slightly obliquely around the sun and so the sun's rays hit the earth's surface with different intensities.

  • Where the sun's rays hit it very flat, the earth is hardly warmed up. The more perpendicular the sun's rays strike, the warmer it gets. Here in Germany, the sun's rays arrive flatter in winter than in summer.

  • When the sun warms the earth, water evaporates and enters the air as water vapor. This warm air rises with the water vapor.

  • At higher altitudes, the air cools down again and clouds of tiny water droplets form.

  • During the day, many clouds in the sky block the sun's rays - this usually makes it colder. When there are few clouds in the sky, it often gets warmer.

  • If more and more water droplets collect in the cloud, it will eventually start to rain or even snow if the temperature is low.

Characteristics of the weather

What is the easiest way to explain the weather to children? You can memorize knowledge about the weather well if you explore the individual elements or characteristics of the weather yourself.

Have you ever worked with a thermometer? The thermometer shows you the temperature. It is usually given in degrees Fahrenheit. What kind of weather do you think is around 80 degrees Fahrenheit? It will probably be sunny and without any clouds. The thermometer also shows you temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit, then it is winter in the U.S. and it could even snow as water freezes to ice vapor droplets.

Did you know that you can measure how much water vapor is in the air? We do this through humidity. The humidity is measured with a hygrometer and given as a percentage. The average humidity is around 50%. If the hygrometer shows significantly more, you can feel it: the air is really humid. This sometimes happens in the bathroom after showering when the bathroom mirror fogs up.

What else can you measure with the weather?

Have you heard of air pressure? You read that right: air can be measured – or actually, you can measure the pressure of the air. This measures how much space the individual air particles have. If the air pressure is high, the air particles are close together and the weather is mostly dry. When the air pressure is low, it is often wet and cloudy outside. You measure the air pressure with the barometer.

Do you know what precipitation is? Rain, snow, and hail are all examples of precipitation. These can be measured with a rain gauge. Do you think it counts the individual water droplets and snow crystals? No, with a rain gauge they measure how much water has reached the surface of the earth.

Have you ever wet your index finger and held it up in the air to feel the wind? When the air moves, you feel it on your finger. Air movements are also called wind and you can determine the strength of the wind with an anemometer. Wind speed is measured in miles per hour, mp/h for short. A light breeze then has about 6 mp/h and a real storm is 50 mp/h.

There are many weather stations in the world constantly measuring the elements of the weather. They measure temperature, humidity, precipitation, air pressure and wind. They can use this measurement data to predict the weather. If the measurement data is evaluated over a longer period of time, the climate at a location can be determined from it.

Transcript The Weather

The weather. Oh, look Uma is outside! It's raining... It's snowing... the sun is shining... The weather can be quite different, but what is weather, and where does it come from anyways? Weather is created when the sun, water, and air work together. Since the earth is round, the sun's rays strike the earth differently in different places. When the sun warms the earth, water evaporates, or in other words turns into vapor, which is gas in the air. The warm air rises with the water vapor, but once it reaches a certain height it cools again and clouds are formed from tiny water droplets. If there are many clouds in the sky, they stop the sun's rays and the air gets colder. If there are few clouds in the sky, the sun's rays can shine straight down to the earth. This makes it warmer, and the temperature rises again. The weather can be measured and described using traits. One trait to describe weather is temperature... but what kind of device can measure temperature? Temperature can be measured using a thermometer! In the United States we measure temperature using fahrenheit... which is represented with THIS symbol. For example, when it is snowing, the temperature is very low... and when it is warm, the temperature is very high! Another trait to describe weather is humidity... which is when the water vapor stays in the air. It's hard to see humidity, so we use a device called a hygrometer. Have you ever drawn something on a window that's fogged up? When windows are fogged up, the humidity in that place is high. If the evaporated water rises, the air becomes colder again and tiny droplets of water form. When that happens, clouds are created... like the cirrus clouds, which look kind of like feathers. These are cumulus clouds, they usually mean sun and good weather. Have you ever seen clouds like this before? These are called cirrocumulus clouds, they stack up high and look very fluffy... but, they usually mean a storm is coming! Watch the clouds today and tell us in the comments what you saw! Water can come back to earth from the clouds (...) do you know what it's called when water falls out from the clouds? Rain! Snow and hail are also kinds of water that fall from clouds. The technical term for this is called precipitation. When it rains, we use a tool called a rain gauge to measure the water. Another trait is air pressure! It is always there, but most of the time you can't feel it. Have you ever had your ears pop in an airplane or going up a steep hill? That's from the air pressure! We measure air pressure with a tool called the barometer. When the air pressure is low, it is usually rainy and cloudy. When the air pressure is high, the weather is dry. But one trait is still missing... the wind! Wind is moving air, we often feel this outside. There are different wind speeds. When the wind is zero miles per hour, there is NO wind. and with a wind speed of seventy-five miles per hour, you have a hurricane, which is strong enough to uproot a whole tree. There are many weather stations in the world constantly measuring the elements of weather to keep us safe. Which helps us to predict the weather. Weather stations measure temperature, humidity, precipitation, air pressure and wind. Today we learned all about the weather! We learned about tools to measure the weather and different traits... and Uma? HER favorite weather seems to be summer!