Georgia Perimeter College
Analyze weather maps.
Observe, measure and
communicate weather data.
Use weather data
to predict weather events and infer patterns and seasonal changes.
What weather words do you know? List them on the board.
Blue paper (construction paper or printer paper)
White paper (printer paper)
Glue or tape or glue sticks
Thermometers of various types
1. Where can you find weather reports? List.
2. What information is found in a weather report? List.
3. What is the difference between a weather report and a weather
4. What instruments are used to collect weather data? What type
of data does each instrument collect?
||Type of data measured or
5. How many different types of thermometers can you name?
- What do the cloud terms mean? See the table below.
Percent cloud cover
||Less than 10% cloud cover
||10-25% cloud cover
||50-90% cloud cover
||More than 90% cloud cover
But what exactly do these cloud covers look like? Using blue and white
paper, model different cloud covers using a piece of white paper that is a
certain percentage of the size of the blue paper. Determine the
percentage of cloud cover you wish to model. Use white paper that is
that percentage of the size of the blue paper. (For example, a white
paper that is half the size of the blue paper would be used to model 50%
cloud cover). Write the percent on the back of the blue page and keep
it a secret. Cut or tear the white paper into clouds. Tape or
glue them onto the blue page.
Randomize or shuffle the sky
simulations. Number each sky simulation on the front. Have students
examine each other's simulations and estimate the percentage of cloud
cover. (Show on document camera, and have students estimate percentage of
cloud cover for each. Students should record data in a table.)
After students have examined all of the simulations and made estimates of
cloud cover, create a table on the board to compare the estimates with the
Number of Underestimates
Number of Overestimates
Then reveal the actual percentage and determine how many overestimates
and how many underestimates there were for each simulation.
- Choose a location and collect weather data for several weeks during this semester
(such as the month of September). (Go back as far as you need to in order to
find at least two rainy days.) You can measure
it directly, find it in the newspaper, or find it online.
Make a table to record your data. Or you may keep your data in
a computer spreadsheet program, such as Excel.
See these websites for weather data:
Past Weather Archive, National Weather Service
Past Observations at Intellicast.com for any city, such as
sure to scroll down to see the data table).
See this exercise
an example of a procedure to follow.
Record the following data (if available):
- Wind speed
- High temperature for the day
- Low temperature for the day (oF)
- Barometric pressure
(or PRS) (in)
- Relative humidity
(or RH) (%)
- Looking at a table of weather data, at what time of day does the highest temperature typically occur?
- On your paper, graph paper, or computer, graph the high and low temperatures
for each month of the year. (See
- How would you display temperature data from a number of different
Find a temperature map in the newspaper or online (such as the
University of Illinois temperature contour map
http://ww2010.atmos.uiuc.edu/(Gh)/guides/maps/sfc/temp/sfctmp.rxml ). Click on the map
to enlarge it, and animate it.
How are the temperatures depicted? _________________________________
What is the scale? ____________________________________
What are the highest temperatures, and where?
What are the lowest temperatures, and where?
You can animate the temperature change over the past several days.
What patterns and changes do you notice?
- Find the lowest barometric pressure readings for the month with your
online data. What
are the lowest pressure readings like? What sort of weather (clouds,
precipitation, etc.) accompanies low pressure readings? Does this
differ from the weather during high pressure readings?
Low pressure readings ____________________________________________________
Type of weather associated with low pressure
Type of weather associated with high pressure
- Rain is associated with what type of barometric pressure? High or
- Why is this? Read your
Introduction to Weather course notes to find out. Write a simple
explanation. Draw sketches to accompany your answer.
- How does barometric pressure change with elevation? Take a barometer and
head to a nearby building that is at least four stories tall.
Most barometers read the pressure in "inches of mercury". The average
atmospheric pressure at sea level is about 30 in.
Read the barometer on the lowest floor of the building.
Ride the elevator up to the top floor of the building (or the roof).
Read the barometer. ________________
Go back to the lowest floor and read the barometer again.
What is the relationship between the reading on the top floor and the bottom
What is the difference in pressure between the top and bottom floor?
What do you think causes this?
Divide the difference in pressure by the pressure value for the lowest
floor. Multiply by 100% to convert your answer to a percentage.
This percentage is approximately the percentage of the Earth's atmosphere
that you went through on the elevator ride.
- Examine an air pressure map (such as the
University of Illinois sea level pressure contour map). Where are
the high and low pressure centers?
- Work through this web site on
Weather Maps, particularly the section on Surface Observations
Click the links and the arrow at the bottom of the page to proceed.
Now look at a
Surface Observation map
Answer the questions
"Image/Text/Data from the University of Illinois WW2010 Project."
a. Fill in the blanks of the diagram to indicate what type of
meteorological data is represented by each location on the symbol.
- Check the National Hurricane Center website. Are there any current
hurricanes, tropical storms, or tropical depressions being monitored today? What are their names? Where are they
expected to hit, and when? List all hurricanes, tropical storms, or
tropical depressions that have been reported over the past month using the
Advisory Archive for the current year.
- Do NOAA
- Plot the course of
Hurricane Ivan (September 2005),
(August 2005), or a current hurricane on a
- Do NOAA
- Do NOAA
Integrated Science ISCI 2001 page
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Content provided by
Pamela Gore, Georgia Perimeter College
Page created by Pamela J.W. Gore
Georgia Perimeter College,
Page created September 25, 2007
Links updated Aug 20, 2008
Other updates Sugust 23, 2008