Students will make a wind vane to measure wind direction.
Estimated Time45 Minutes
Setting RequiredInside and Outside
- S4E4. Students will analyze weather charts/maps and collect weather data to predict weather events and infer patterns and seasonal changes.
- a. Identify weather instruments and explain how each is used in gathering weather data and making forecasts (thermometer, rain gauge, barometer, wind vane, anemometer).
- b. Using a weather map, identify the fronts, temperature, and precipitation and use the information to interpret the weather conditions.
- c. Use observations and records of weather conditions to predict weather patterns throughout the year.
- Cardstock (10 cm x 10 cm sheet per small group)
- Straw (1 per small group)
- Pin (1 per small group)
- Pencil with eraser top (1 per small group)
- Scissors, glue / scotch tape (1 per small group)
- Show students the updated wind map found at http://hint.fm/wind/ and discuss what causes the wind (different temperatures between land and water, warm air rising).
- Distribute materials and lead students in following these directions to build their wind vanes.
- Place wind vanes out in the school yard and notice that it points in the direction from which the wind is blowing. Students can also add a compass rose to the base of their windvane.
- Record data each day for two weeks to determine the prevailing wind patterns of that time of year at your school.
Additional Content for Exploration
Students could also make a windsock to determine the strength and direction of the wind by following the directions on this website.