Meteorology is an observational science where meteorologists interpret observations from the land's surface, oceans, and from the upper atmosphere to forecast weather. This is done using specialist computer programs designed to make both short and long-term predictions of weather and climate. The predictions are used in the air transport industry, the defense industry, public utilities, commercial organizations (such as retailers and event organizers) as well as for public interest through television, radio and the press. Meteorologists are also widely involved in research into understanding and predicting climate change and into understanding and improving models of weather prediction.

When looking at a weather map, a meteorologist needs to know where the cold air is, where the warm air is, where it is raining, what type of clouds are in the area, and many more things. The reason for this is that forecasts need to be accurate. But, they also need to be timely.

If too much time is spent making the forecast, it will be late. Not many people want to know what the weather was doing twenty minutes ago. Most people want to know what the weather is going to do in the near future. Because of this, weather symbols were invented so that weather maps could be looked at in a short amount of time.







Teacher Notes

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Based on the weather maps and data you have collected during the past two weeks, create a Power Point presentation that will forecast the weather for the next three days . Use Excel to graph the data you collected and include the graphs in your presentation. Graph Temperature and pressure verses Time. Your presentations need to include maps, graphs, weather symbols, weather tools, and weather pictures. Last but not least, present your presentation like a real meteorologist using note cards.



  1. Graph your weather data using the following Excel spreadsheet. Data table & graph file
    A. Save this data and graph to your personal space so that you can eventually put it into Power Point.

    B. Look back at your maps from the past two weeks and circle the days on the graph that fronts passed over Mason. Observe and analyze how temperature pressure, and cloud cover changed as the fronts (cold and or warm) passed over Mason.

  2. Use your graph and the last weather map recorded, to make predictions about temperature, pressure, and cloud cover for the next 3 days.
    Extra credit: What is the relationship between temperature, pressure, and fronts.

  3. Create a Power Point presentation that illustrates your graphs and weather predictions. Your presentation must contain the following information.

    A. Graph of past data including your daily (3 days) weather predictions for temperature, pressure, and cloud cover (etc?).

    B. A current map, which you you will use to explain predictions and show predicted movement of fronts. During the map discussion of your presentation include the following.
    a. Discuss air masses (continental, polar...ect)
    b. Discuss Highs and Lows and wind directions.
    c. Discuss weather associated with each front.

    C. Include pictures and stories of extreme weather that might be associated with the fronts on the current map(use your imagination!!).

    D. Include picture and description of a weather tool could be used to help forecast the weather.
  4. Using note cards, your group must present your Power Point just like a real meteorologist would on the weather channel. It might me helpful to watch a real meteorologist in action before the planning of this part.
    Extra credit: Include commercials in your presentation!

    Use the following web sites to help you construct your presentation!!

    1. http://www.weather.com/
    2. http://ww2010.atmos.uiuc.edu/(Gh)/home.rxml
    - archives (satellite images)
    - current weather
    - meteorology online guides
    3. http://google.com Use google for searching for other information!



Beginning 1

Developing 2

Accomplished 3

Exemplary 4


Interpretation of graphs and predictions

Graph and predictions are incomplete
Some predictions were made. Graph was included, but not fully explained

Most predictions are clear and logical and backed up by past data. Graph is included and partly explained in presentation.

All predictions are clear and logical and backed up by past data. Graph is included and accurately explained in presentation.

Creativity of Power Point presentation

Slides are lacking creativity and are incomplete

Some slides have animations, transitions, color, images, etc, but lack organization.

Most slides have animations, transitions, and background color, includes both images and graphs

All slides have animations, transitions, and background color, includes both images and graphs
Interpretation of Power Point Maps

Map was incorrectly interpreted.
Attempted to explain map and make prediction based on weather terms.
Explained map and predictions using most of the weather terms: fronts, air masses, highs/lows, types of weather.
Accurately explained map and predictions in terms of fronts, highs/lows, air masses, types of weather.
Professionalism of presentation
Presentation was incomplete
Presentation was unorganized, but still was professional.
Presentation was well organized and presented in a clear manner.
All group members presented in a clear manner, a clear organized sequence of reporting was evident. Very professional!

Grade Yourself

Wasn't helpful and could of participated in a more productive manner.
Verbally and visually active in creation of presentation, but could of been more actively involved.
I was somewhat active with getting information and creating the presentation. I was also somewhat active in the group presentation.
I was very active with getting information and creating the presentation. I was also very active in the group presentation.
Extra Credit      






Congratulations on a job well done. After finishing this chapter, you should be able to interpret weather data and weather maps and be able to interpret current weather conditions and make good weather predictions at least one to three days into the future. This will be a handy tool that will help you to plan vacations and other events around the weather. In any case, watching the weather is a fun hobby for anyone who has a curiosity for thunderstorms, hurricanes, tornadoes!


Explain patterns of changing weather and how they are measured (SCI.V.3.MS.1).

Benchmark Clarification
Weather scientists/meteorologists try to predict the weather. They use a variety of instruments to measure weather in order to develop patterns. They base their predictions on these measurements and patterns.

Students will:

  • Use weather maps and satellite images to detect weather patterns
  • Use weather maps and satellite images information to write weather predictions
  • Manipulate a variety of weather measuring instruments to measure temperature, wind speed and direction, cloud cover, humidity, dew point, amount of rainfall, and other weather phenomena

Key Concepts (vocab)
weather Patterns
cold front
warm front
stationary front
air mass

Tools (used to collect data before web quest)
rain gauge
wind direction indicator
weather maps
satellite weather images
cloud charts

Real-World Context
sudden temperature, pressure, and cloud formation changes
records, charts, and graphs of weather changes over period of days
lake effect snow
Instructional Example SCI.V.3.MS.1

Benchmark Question: What causes different kinds of weather?
Focus Question: How do you interpret and forecast weather?