Today is World Meteorological Day, an opportunity for national meteorological services around the world to come together and raise awareness of various weather issues. The day commemorates the forming of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in 1950, the WMO has became the specialised agency of the United Nations for meteorology, operational hydrology and related geophysical sciences.
The weather is something that children learn about very quickly especially in Britain where it seems to be a favourite topic of conversation! They are told to wear coats, hats and gloves because it is cold, wear their raincoats and wellies because it is wet and to take their jumpers off and wear a sun hat / sunglasses because it is hot. There are many different ways that learning about the weather can be incorporated into children’s activities.
The weather (in particular rain!) features in many children’s songs and rhymes so you can sing your way through the different the different types of weather. Some favourites include:
- Rain, rain go away
- Insey Wincey Spider
- I hear thunder
- It’s raining it’s pouring
- Five little snowmen
- The sun has got his hat on
Children who are learning about the weather my like to keep a weather chart. Younger children can complete a weather chart by checking the weather and adding that weather symbol or by turning a clock hand to point to the correct symbol.
Older children might prefer to keep a weather diary where they can draw in the weather each day and then count up how many sunny, cloudy, rainy and snowy days there have been in the week or month. They might also want to make a wind sock, a wind vane and rain guage to measure the weather more scientifically.
Matching and sorting games are great to help children understand the consequences of the weather.
Cut pictures of people / clothes from magazines and match them to the weather types; swimwear, shorts and t-shirts for sunny days, raincoats and umbrellas for rainy days, snowsuits, hats and gloves for snowy days.
Or do it in three dimensions – get a big basket of real clothes and sort them into piles for the different days of weather. Also match activities to the weather for example, flying kites on windy days, splashing in puddles on rainy days and building snowmen on snowy days. The Monkey Weather Chart is a lovely resource for this activity as it has all the pieces in one place and can be played with over and over again.
A fun weather related craft activity is making weather collages. Use cotton wool to make fluffy clouds, silver foil to make rain drops, cut out paper snowflakes, and use squares of different coloured paper to make a bright rainbow mosaic.