This series is the second of the Science of Weather digital extensions, a digital version of the original Science of Weather
curriculum, also available in print. While the original paper version was published as one single volume of worksheets, and separate teaching notes in 5 volumes, these new series contain both the worksheets and the teaching notes, and are broken down by themes, to accommodate teachers who might be interested in teaching a particular topic, rather than a full blown, year-long, weather and climate curriculum. (If, however, you are only interested in the worksheets, consider downloading the student workbook. If you are interested in the entire set of teaching notes, consider downloading the "5-volume set.")
In WX2 Heat and Conduction, students learn about the following:
- Conduction of heat in solids, conductors and insulators (vacuum).
- How do we define heat?
- Heat in liquids, and gases.
- Absolute zero.
- Heat as a form of energy.
- Energy transfer.
- Heat in the atmosphere (vertical temperature distribution, average temperature, range of temperature variations, troposphere, tropopause, thickness of the atmosphere).
- Heat loss and the significance of the surface area-to-volume ratio.
- Thermal expansion and contraction (height of the tropopause).
- Hot-air balloons.
- Open and closed systems.
- Heat capacity.
- Specific heat (why does land heat up more than water?)
- Temperature contrasts and heat imbalance in the atmosphere.
- Some reflective properties of the earth and atmosphere.
- Diurnal cycle.
- Why is the sky blue?
Students also learn to think, explain, and write in logical format, showing cause-and-effect relationships. They apply specific math concepts such as area and volume (rectangular solid, sphere), powers, hyperbola (graph and equation). They practice graphing and interpreting a graph (slopes). They also learn about and practice induction, deduction, forward and backward reasoning.
The first activities can be adapted for grades 2 to 5 by simplifying the discussions and explanations. Otherwise, most of the series will be well suited for grades 6 to 12. I also use these worksheets as starting points and activities in professional development workshops. This particular series is a good complement/supplement to existing weather, climate, and environmental science modules, such as FOSS Air and Weather, FOSS Properties of Matter, FOSS Weather and Water, STC Weather, STC Catastrophic Events (Understanding Weather and Climate), and It's About Time EarthComm.
All the activities are aligned with the national standards, as made explicit at the end of each activity in these Teaching Notes.
For more information, visit www.scienceofweather.org
Science of Weather
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