Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.

- Charles Dudley Warner

Weather and atmospheric science offer lots of opportunities for interesting explorations. It's a satisfyingly complex area, with lots of online resources so you can make your project as easy or as advanced as you want. And when you're done, you'll have a science fair project everyone can talk about.

Lesson Plan Grade: Kindergarten
In this lesson, students will create weather report cards of their birthday seasons and analyze them to identify differences and similarities between them. Based on their observations, they will explain how weather conditions change between seasons and discuss how we adapt to seasonal changes. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • K-ESS2-1. Use and share observations of local weather conditions to describe patterns over time.
Lesson Plan Grade: Kindergarten
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Students will enter this lesson knowing that materials get warm in the sun. In this fun follow-up activity, your students will get creative with craft materials. They will figure out how to protect an "animal" and its territory from getting too hot in the sun. What will they build to keep their animals cool? This lesson connects effortlessly with the How Sunlight Warms the Earth lesson. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • K-PS3-2. Use tools and materials to design and build a structure that will reduce the warming effect of sunlight on an area.
Lesson Plan Grade: Kindergarten
Kindergarten students associate the sun with light and warmth. This lesson helps them expand this knowledge by getting their hands dirty! They will fill cups with soil, water and rocks and place them in the sun and shade for a while. By finding out how they can tell where a cup has been stored, they will learn how the sun affects Earth's surface. In a follow-up lesson, Create Shade to Protect from the Sun, students figure out how to protect a territory from getting too hot in the sun. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • K-PS3-1. Make observations to determine the effect of sunlight on Earth's surface.
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd
What do a crazy hair day, a wooden door stuck in its frame, and the weather have in common? Humidity! In this fun hands-on weather lesson students explore surprising information about human hair, the air around them, and the weather by building a hygrometer from a strand of hair, a straw, a wooden panel, and two nails. A great way to make humidity visible! Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-ESS2-1. Represent data in tables and graphical displays to describe typical weather conditions expected during a particular season.
  • 3-ESS2-2. Obtain and combine information to describe climates in different regions of the world.
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd
Students experience the weather every day: they feel cold spring mornings and warm summer afternoons. This hands-on lesson helps them quantify how hot or cold it is by using a thermometer they will make themselves! Based on their gathered data and observations, students can infer patterns about how temperature varies by location and time. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-ESS2-1. Represent data in tables and graphical displays to describe typical weather conditions expected during a particular season.
  • 3-ESS2-2. Obtain and combine information to describe climates in different regions of the world.
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd
Help the budding meteorologists in your classroom learn how to measure wind speed by building their own anemometers (wind speed meters) with paper cups and straws. Then do a simple experiment in which students change the "wind" speed using a fan and measure how fast their anemometer spins. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-ESS2-1. Represent data in tables and graphical displays to describe typical weather conditions expected during a particular season.
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd
How do scientists know what the weather will be like in the future? In this fun weather lesson, students set up a weather station and collect data such as sky coverage, temperature, and rainfall. As they identify connections in their data, students will realize that these connections can help forecast what the weather will be like in the short-term future. The lesson culminates in students making and presenting a weather forecast for their fellow students. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-ESS2-1. Represent data in tables and graphical displays to describe typical weather conditions expected during a particular season.
Lesson Plan Grade: Kindergarten
In this lesson, students will investigate seasonal patterns by matching various pictures to the different seasons. In small groups, students will analyze the pictures for clues to a specific season, describe what they observe, and explain what evidence they have found in each picture to identify the season. By comparing the images, students will be able to recognize patterns and identify seasonal changes over time. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • K-ESS2-1. Use and share observations of local weather conditions to describe patterns over time.
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Free science fair projects.