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Tracking Falls Falling Temperatures

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Subjects

  • Mathematics
    --Applied Math
    --Arithmetic
    --Measurement
    --Statistics
  • Science
    --Physical Science
    ----Earth Science

Grade

  • K-2
  • 3-5
  • 6-8
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Brief Description

Reinforce many skills by tracking this fall’s falling temperatures.

Objectives

Students

  • track weather from day to day and record results on graphs, maps, or other places.
  • see firsthand how weather temperatures trend cooler as fall progresses.
  • practice grade-appropriate skills in geography (map location, color keys, more) and math (figuring temperature ranges, averages, more).
  • learn practical skills that will last them a lifetime.

Keywords

weather, fall, autumn, temperatures, map, graph, color key

Materials Needed[shopmaterials]

Lesson Plan

From September to November, track fall's falling temperatures. (Maybe those falling temps are why they call this season fall!) Tracking each day's low temperature is an excellent way to reinforce many skills. Following are a handful of activities that teachers across the grades can use as students track the falling temperatures.

Each day, record the temperature at the same time of day. You might record the temperature during Morning Meeting, as soon as students come in after lunch, or just before leaving for the day. Keep a record of the temperatures. You might create a large graph that reflects the temperature each day. Monitor the ups and downs of the temperature as fall approaches. Talk about the trends you see.

An alternative to tracking the temperature at a specific time each day is to track the low temperature of the day throughout the fall season. Most daily newspapers provide a record of the low temperature from the day before. Record that low temperature throughout the fall on a classroom graph.

We have created a printable Tracking Fall's Falling Temperatures work sheet that you can use for this purpose. Each student can keep his or her own graph of low temperatures for a two-week period. At the end of two weeks, print out a new graph and continue tracking the low temps.

Since you creating a graph, why not create a graph with a color key? Study the color key weather maps in your daily newspaper or on USA Today's Weather page. Notice that each color on the map corresponds to a 10-degree temperature range. Find a color in a box of 64 crayons that corresponds most closely to the colors on the USA Today weather map. (Or create your own color key.) Color the bars on your graph with the corresponding colors to represent daily low temperatures in the single digits, 10s, 20s, 30s

And while you're keeping track of the low temperature in your neck of the woods, why not monitor the low temperature in a handful of other parts of the country or the world? Most newspapers provide that information on their weather page. Or you can go to the Weather Channel home page, type in a ZIP Code, then click the yesterday button for yesterday's low temperature. (Alternative source: National Weather Service Temperature and Precipitation Tables.) Compare your daily low temperature with the low temperature in other locations. Transform a bulletin board into a weather map on which you track those daily low temps. Or each student might use our Tracking Fall's Falling Temperatures work sheet to track low temperatures in a different U.S. location. Students might record on an U.S. Outline Map the low temperatures reported by their peers.

Daily low temperatures can go up and down like a roller coaster. One day the low might be in the 30s, the next day it could be in the 60s. When temps go up and down like that it might not be so easy to see over the short term how fall temperatures are trending colder. One way to more clearly see that cooling trend is to track average temperatures from week to week. (There might be a blip where the average temperature actually rises, but over a period of several weeks the cooling trend should be clear.) For that purpose, students in grades 4 and up might record the low temperatures for a seven-day period, add them together, then divide by 7 to find the average temperature for the week. Students might also track the range of temperature, the median (the temperature for the week or month that is in the middle; half the days were cooler than that temperature and the other half were warmer), and the mode (the low temperature that is seen most often over the course of the time monitored).

Assessment

Tracking fall’s falling temperatures over an extended period of time will reinforce skills of science, math, geography, and more. Create an assessment to measure mastery of the skills you are using this activity to measure. These are skills well worth teaching, because they are skills that will last a lifetime.

Lesson Plan Source

EducationWorld.com

Submitted By

Gary Hopkins

National Standards 

MATHEMATICS: Number and Operations
GRADES Pre-K - 2
NM-NUM.PK-2.1 Understand Numbers, Ways of Representing Numbers, Relationships Among Numbers, and Number Systems
NM-NUM.PK-2.2 Understand Meanings of Operations and How They Relate to One Another
GRADES 3 - 5
NM-NUM.3-5.1 Understand Numbers, Ways of Representing Numbers, Relationships Among Numbers, and Number Systems
NM-NUM.3-5.2 Understand Meanings of Operations and How They Relate to One Another
GRADES 6 - 8
NM-NUM.6-8.1 Understand Numbers, Ways of Representing Numbers, Relationships Among Numbers, and Number Systems
NM-NUM.6-8.2 Understand Meanings of Operations and How They Relate to One Another

MATHEMATICS: Measurement
GRADES Pre-K - 2
NM-MEA.PK-2.1 Understand Measurable Attributes of Objects and the Units, Systems, and Processes of Measurement
GRADES 3 - 5
NM-MEA.3-5.1 Understand Measurable Attributes of Objects and the Units, Systems, and Processes of Measurement
GRADES 6 - 8
NM-MEA.6-8.1 Understand Measurable Attributes of Objects and the Units, Systems, and Processes of Measurement
NM-MEA.6-8.2 Apply Appropriate Techniques, Tools, and Formulas to Determine Measurements

MATHEMATICS: Data Analysis and Probability
GRADES Pre-K - 2
NM-DATA.PK-2.3 Develop and Evaluate Inferences and Predictions That Are Based on Data
GRADES 3 - 5
NM-DATA.3-5.3 Develop and Evaluate Inferences and Predictions That Are Based on Data
GRADES 6 - 8
NM-DATA.6-8.3 Develop and Evaluate Inferences and Predictions That Are Based on Data

MATHEMATICS: Connections
GRADES Pre-K - 12
NM-CONN.PK-12.3 Recognize and Apply Mathematics in Contexts Outside of Mathematics

MATHEMATICS: Representation
GRADES Pre-K - 12
NM-REP.PK-12.1 Create and Use Representations to Organize, Record, and Communicate Mathematical Ideas
NM-REP.PK-12.2 Select, Apply, and Translate Among Mathematical Representations to Solve Problems
NM-REP.PK-12.3 Use Representations to Model and Interpret Physical, Social, and Mathematical Phenomena

SCIENCE
GRADES K - 4
NS.K-4.4 Earth and Space Science
GRADES 5 - 8
NS.5-8.4 Earth and Space Science

SOCIAL SCIENCES: Geography
GRADES K - 12
NSS-G.K-12.1 The World in Spatial Terms
NSS-G.K-12.2 Places and Regions
NSS-G.K-12.5 Environment and Society
NSS-G.K-12.6 Uses of Geography

See more Lesson Plans of the Day in our Lesson Plan of the Day Archive. (There you can search for lessons by subject too.)

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    Education World®
    Copyright © 2010 Education World

    Originally posted on 09/16/2005
    Last updated 08/21/2010


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