Now that it is Spring, we can look forward to nice sunny days and bright evenings.
As we live in Ireland, our weather is very changeable so weather forecasts are very useful especially if we are planning a picnic. Do we need to bring raincoats? Or sunscreen? Or both!
To understand weather, we need to know the difference between weather, climate and atmosphere.
The atmosphere is a set of gases, that we usually call air, that surrounds the earth. Conditions such as wind, rain, clouds, heat are all the result of how the atmosphere behaves.
Our atmosphere has five main layers but most of the weather occurs in the troposphere. The atmosphere protects the earth from being too cold or too hot.
Weather is what the conditions of the atmosphere are over a short period of time, days or weeks.
Climate is how the atmosphere "behaves" over relatively long periods of time, months and years.
You can download the instructions for the activity and the full lesson here!
Make a wind turbine
A wind turbine is a machine that converts wind into renewable electricity.
What you will need: A milk carton, scissors, string, wooden skewers or sticks, pencils, drinking straw, cardboard, thumb tack or sellotape or Blu Tack.
Step 1: Using the pencil or a pen, poke a hole on both sides of the carton near the top. The pencil must come out the other side.
Step 2: Replace the pencil with a drinking straw.
Step 3: Push a wooden skewer or rod, or stick, through the straw.
Step 4: Take some cardboard and cut out a circle about six centimetres in diameter. Múinteoir Clíona used sellotape to trace the circle but you can use a cup to make sure your circle is nice and round.
Ask for some help from an adult if you need it when cutting out the circle. Mark the centre of your circle using a pencil. Then mark three lines on the outside of your circle, diving it into thirds, like below.
Then cut a small slit along each line.
Step 5: Using a thumb tack, or sellotape, or Blu Tac, attach the circle to the end of your wooden skewer.
Step 6: Make the blades for your turbine. Taking some card, cut out three rectangles. Then cut a slit in each of the three rectangles.
Step 7: Slot your blades into the slits you made on your cardboard circle.
Step 8: Take your string and using sellotape, tape it to the other end of the wooden skewer.
Step 9: Let's test our wind turbine!
Our wind turbine is now finished. If there is wind, you can bring your turbine outside to test. When the wind blows, it will turn our blades and will cause the string to wind up!
If there is no wind, ask an adult if you can use a hairdryer to test!
Make your own weather forecast!
Cut out the weather symbols below, see if you can recreate today's weather forecast on the map of Ireland.