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Movement & Play, Vocabulary, Weather


K, 1st, 2nd


Science, Earth and Space Sciences, English Language Arts, Health


60 minutes

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Northeast, New Jersey


Google Docs, Google Slides

Understanding Weather

Created By Teacher:
Last Updated:
Oct 3, 2022



This lesson introduces the concept of weather to students.

Step 1 - Inquire:  Students generate ideas in response to the question "What is weather?" and watch a read aloud video of the book Fabienne’s Wild Weather Adventure.

Step 2 - Investigate:  Students learn the definition of weather and start an individual weather journal to track the weather each day.

Step 3 - Inspire: Students design their own weather wheel and make a prediction of the Earth’s climate 30 years from now by drawing a timeline.

Accompanying Teaching Materials
Teaching Tips


  • This lesson creates a collaborative learning environment for students as they are introduced to weather and its importance.

  • This lesson features sensory learning as students use their five senses to make observations about the weather.

  • This lesson features excellent vocabulary development.

  • This lesson provides an introduction to the relationship between climate and weather.

Additional Prerequisites

  • You can place a thermometer in an easily accessed outside location (e.g., near the recess area) and check the temperature daily.

  • It is necessary to print the weather journal and weather wheel ahead of time.


  • You can have students think-pair-share during the read aloud. Students can make predictions or answer questions.

  • You can pause the read aloud before the text is read for students to make observations and predictions about the story.

  • Groups of students with mixed abilities can collaborate on their weather wheel and their future climate prediction.

  • Possible Extension: Work with the school administration to find a way for students to share a daily weather report with the school (e.g., live morning assembly, email blast, TV announcement, etc.).

Scientist Notes

Observing the weather to track changes is an important activity. This lesson allows students to understand the local weather and observe the patterns and their impact on their daily activities and the environment. All materials are suitable techniques for qualitative weather forecasting. On that account, this lesson has passed our scientific credibility process and is recommended for teaching.

  • English Language Arts
    • Reading: Literature (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.1 With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about key details in a text (e.g., who, what, where, when, why, how).
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.4 Ask and answer questions about unknown words in a text.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.K.10 Actively engage in group reading activities with purpose and understanding.
  • Science
    • ESS2: Earth's Systems
      • K-ESS2-1. Use and share observations of local weather conditions to describe patterns over time.
15 minutes
  • Teacher splits the Vocabulary Cards in half and students guess which vocabulary word matches the picture.
  • Students learn which picture matches with which vocabulary word.
    • Teacher puts the Vocabulary Cards on the walls of the classroom.
    • Teacher walks around the classroom touching the weather cards.
    • Teacher models the gesture while saying the vocabulary word (e.g., It's sunny!)
    • Students follow the gestures and say the words with the teacher.
  • Students play the game “Run for the Weather.”
    • The whole class stands up.
    • Teacher shouts out a weather word (e.g., "It’s rainy!") and students have to run over to the correct picture, touch it, and do the gesture.
    • If there are a lot of students, it is worthwhile having multiple pictures of each card placed around the walls of the room.
  • Students listen and watch the read aloud video of the book Fabienne’s Wild Weather Adventure.
  • Students notice the symbols and pictures for weather in the book.
  • Teacher asks, “How did it feel to listen to the story?” Students may refer to their weather gestures and relate their emotions to the weather.

30 minutes
  • Teacher asks:
    • Can anyone remember what the weather was like a week ago?
    • What could we do to help us remember our daily weather observations? 
    • What information about weather do we think is important to observe and record? 
    • How often should we record the weather? Why?
  • Teacher presents the blank weather journal and models how the students will record their observations. 
  • The whole class goes outside to observe and record the weather.
    • Students observe the leaves, grass, flag, and the rest of their surroundings.
    • Students discuss how it looks and how it feels.
    • Students record these observations in the journal for today’s date.
  • Students continue to collect the weather data each day and at different times of day if the weather changes. Observations for the weather can include sunny, cloudy, partly cloudy, rainy, windy, snowy, foggy, and thunderstorm.
15 minutes
  • Teacher asks “What is a meteorologist?” and “What do you think a meteorologist does?”
  • Students make their own weather wheel to help them in their weather observation following the instructions in the Teacher Slideshow.

  • Students return to the story of Fabienne's Wild Weather Adventure. Teacher asks students about the different weather mentioned in the book.

  • Students go back to pages 8-9 of the book. Students look at page 9 of the book that mentions Earthly’s doctor telling her she was suffering from climate change.

    • Teacher asks, “What do you think of Earthly’s doctor’s diagnosis?”

    • Teacher asks, “Is it usually rainy or usually dry?”

    • Teacher asks, "Is it typically hot or typically cold?"
    • Teacher says, “A region’s climate is determined by observing its weather over a period of many years — generally 30 years or more. Climate change means the way the world’s weather has changed over a long period of time.”

  • Students draw Earthly and make a timeline in 10-year intervals of how they think the Earth’s climate will change for the next 30 years.

    • Option to divide students into groups.

    • Possible guide questions and sample answers:

      • Do you think the Earth will get warmer or colder? Why or why not?

      • Based on the story, Earth is suffering from sickness so it will get warmer.

      • Do you think the weather will be easier to predict? Why or why not?

      • Do you think the climate will change? Why or why not?

  • Students present their predictions and discuss why weather is important.


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