Watching the Weather
Age Range: 7 to 11
As part of these activities, we used our accounts with Superclubs Plus to share data online. The children had also been given an extra home page which they used to create their own web pages about their local weather. They were also given new 'graph blocks' which allowed them to make simple graphs for their pages.
One of our most enjoyable lessons during this project combined skills from Science, Geography, Literacy, Speaking and Listening, and ICT. The children had already identified different types of weather and they then worked in pairs to research their own local weather data using Wunderground. They then used the forecasts on this site to write their own script for a TV-style forecast, using relevant weather vocabulary, along with any other phrases they may have heard when watching these at home. We also watched some examples of weather forecasts from Youtube.
Once the children had written their scripts, they created a Powerpoint presentation which was used as the backdrop for the forecast. This was made incredibly easy through the use of an Interactive Weather Presenting Kit which was available from the Met Office. The CD-ROM contains Powerpoint slides with appropriate maps and weather symbols which the children were able to drag onto the maps to match their scripts.
When these were completed, one child from each pair copied their script onto the fantastic Cueprompter site to run an 'autocue'. Their Powerpoint presentations were then projected onto the Smartboard, so that the other child could present the forecast. Their forecasts were filmed with a Flip video camera, so that we could watch them again and evaluate their performances later.
It was really interesting to see how each group had tackled this complex task, interpreting the weather data from Wunderground, creating a script, adding their own advice to those watching the forecast ("wrap up warm this evening!"), making a presentation, and then bringing it all together to create something that looked really professional.
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