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We study air and weather in second grade in this homeschool. There’s tons of opportunity for hands-on exploration, and some great experiments that we can do to learn more about meteorology and hydrology. We do units on the atmosphere, clouds, seasons, and what makes the weather. But my kids’ favorite part is always the part on extreme weather: storms. So I put together all the science resources for our homeschool weather unit study that I use.
Humanity has always tried to predict the weather. We have old sayings like “Red sky at night, sailors delight,” meaning that a red sky at night means a beautiful day the next day. We’ve learned to watch the animals, plants, and clouds to try to forecast what the weather will be tomorrow, the next day, next week, and next season. And we still aren’t very good at it, because weather can be so complex.
The Air and Weather resources:
I’m a huge fan of using stories to teach science and history. Stories can spark imagination and inspire a life-long curiosity. Whether it’s a science fiction YA novel exploring environmental themes or a children’s picture book that shows everyday uses of science, good stories can develop a love of learning. So use these stories to help your kids explore air and weather science as part of your homeschool weather unit study.
Picture books, with colorful illustrations, simple, engaging stories and fun characters are perfect introductions to science concepts. From the science of snow to chasing rainbows, start your science study with some of these favorites:
- Rainbow Soup by Laura Hanks Stevens
- Oh Say Can You Say What’s the Weather Today? by Tish Rabe
- Little Raindrop by Igloo Books
- A Party for Clouds: Thunderstorms by Belinda Jensen
- Lorraine by Ketch Secor
- Heat Wave at Mud Flat by James Stevenson
- Fishing in the Air by Sharon Creek
- A Rainbow of my Own by Don Freeman
- Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs by Judi Barrett
Read-aloud or Chapter Books:
Weather is often the catalyst for some great stories. Think of the classic Wizard of Oz! Dorothy would never have made it to Oz if it weren’t for that darn tornado, right? Hook your kids into the power of weather with these fantastic read-alouds.
- Blizzard by Jim Murphy
- Upside Down in the Middle of Nowhere by Julie T. Lamana
- My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
- Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes
- Hear the Wolves by Victoria Scott
- Night of the Twisters by Ivy Ruckman
For non-fiction & informative reading:
I love the non-fiction series for science from DK Eyewitness, and the “The Magic School Bus”. Kids love exploring weather science because it is so easy to see for themselves. And natural disasters look incredible — as long as they’re on TV or in a book. Share the incredible power of weather with your kids with some of these books!
- The Magic School Bus Inside a Hurricane by Joanna Cole
- DK Eyewitness Books: Hurricane & Tornado by Jack Challoner
- DK Eyewitness Books: Weather by Brian Cosgrove
- The Kids’ Book of Weather Forecasting by Mark Breen
- What’s the Weather?: Clouds, Climate, and Global Warming by Fraser & Judith Ralston
- You Wouldn’t Want to Live Without Extreme Weather! by Roger Canavan
- A Wonderful World of Weather by Kay Barnham
- Weather and Climate Change by Laura Howell
- Wild Weather by Kingfisher
- Shapes in the Sky: A Book About Clouds by Josepha Sherman
From storm chasers to weather forecasters, watching the weather has been a passion of humanity for millennia. The first farmers and sailors watched the skies, and today we all watch movies, tv series and the daily weather forecast. Weather-based movies have been blockbusters — fiction or not!
Try some of these amazing weather shows and documentaries to capture your kids’ interest in learning more about weather as part of your homeschool weather unit study.
Also, I highly recommend Crash Course Kids: Weather Compilation, for a great, easy-to-understand series of videos on weather for kids.
Activities you can do:
These lapbooks and unit studies make awesome curriculum and lesson plans to help guide your learning:
- What is Snow?
- Extreme Weather Curriculum
- Weather Curriculum
- Weather Lapbook
- Tornadoes Lapbook
- Weather Unit
- Mystery Science: Weather & Seasons
And explore weather with these weather forecasting and exploration kits:
- Green Science Weather Science Kit
- STEM Starters for Kids: Meteorology Activity Book
- Explore and Find Weather Science Kit
Other Weather Resources:
Here are some interactive websites that will help you and your kids learn more about air, weather and climate:
- Beyond Penguins: Weather
- Earth’s Weather
- Weather Wiz Kids
- NASA’s Climate Kids
- DK Find Out: Weather
- Weather Report for Kids
- Web Weather for Kids
And check out a weather station near you!
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What’s your favorite way to study science? Do you prefer to watch it, read about it, or get hands-on?