Emerson’s third graders recently “visited” the Home of the World’s Worst Weather – the Weather Observatory at the summit of Mount Washington, NH. Video conferencing brought an Observatory meteorologist right into the classroom for a memorable scientific exchange. Getting to talk with a weather expert stationed 6,288 feet above sea level in earth’s windiest place – wow!
The students prepared over several weeks for the video conference. They researched atmospheric layers and ozone depletion, and did a simulation to understand the greenhouse effect and climate change. They experimented with temperatures and thermometers, investigated air pressure concepts, and created balloon barometers. Focusing on wind, they constructed ribbon wind vanes, learned about the Beaufort Scale, and charted wind speeds in terms of speed on land. They studied the water cycle, clouds and storms.
Prior to the video conference, they monitored the webcams and weather comments on the Mount Washington web site. The third graders became weather wizards, eager to talk with the scientists and connect their study of weather tools to the real world.
And what a cold and windy world! During their videoconference with the meterologist, they learned that Mount Washington has recorded the highest wind speed on earth. Volunteers go out every hour, 24 hours a day, whatever the weather, to monitor their weather tools. Questions flew back and forth with the meteorologist.
When the video link was disconnected there was only one request from the students – when can we do it again?!
A very warm and sunny thank you to Kathy Salley, Emerson Lower School Science Teacher!