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Build a fully functional Weather Station with your kids, and then teach them how to use the instruments. Use your readings to track the weather. Then try to make predictions.
What You'll Need:
- Small piece of peg board (about eight inches wide and one foot long)
- White spray paint
- Rain gauge
- Wind sock or weather vane (See Clock the Wind)
- Paper to make weather chart
- Barometer (See So Much Pressure!)
How to Make a Weather Station:
Step 1: In a ventilated area, paint the stake and peg board white using outdoor spray paint. Be sure to wear safety goggles and have an adult supervise.
Step 2: Nail the pegboard to the stake so the top of the board is one foot below the top of the stake. Use wire to fasten a thermometer and rain gauge to the pegboard.
Step 3: Fasten a weather vane or wind sock to the top of the stake. The north side of the wind vane's direction indicator should be on the same side as the thermometer.
Step 4: Find an open area with no overhanging trees or large buildings in the way. Have an adult help you dig a hole about 18 inches deep. Sink your stake into the bottom of it so that the side of the station with the thermometer is facing north. Then fill it back in and stomp the soil down firmly.
Step 5: Keep a weather notebook. Take readings of temperature, wind direction (and speed, if you made the wind sock), and rainfall daily.
Step 6: If you have a hygrometer and a barometer you can add readings of humidity and air pressure to your notebook. Compare your readings to those you see in the newspaper. See if you can predict the weather.
Weather Folktales are a great way for kids to combine science and creativity. Read about the Weather Folktales science project on the next page of science projects for kids: weather and seasons.