Weather and Water

Grade 6

The Weather and Water Course focuses on Earth's atmosphere, weather, and water. Understanding weather is more than reading a thermometer and recording measurements. Students learn about atoms and molecules, density, wind, and energy transfer, then investigate phase change, the water cycle, ocean currents, climate change, and meteorology.

Investigation 1: What Is Weather?—Introduce the concept of weather and the tools that meteorologists use to measure and study weather factors.

Investigation 2: Air Pressure and Wind—Investigate the relationship between changing air pressure and wind, and explore a particle model for air pressure.

Investigation 3: Convection—Develop the concept of density on the way to understanding convection as a mechanism for energy transfer.

Investigation 4: Radiation—Compare cities at different latitudes to discover climate differences, then discover how climate is related to the amount of solar energy transferred to Earth.

Investigation 5: Conduction—Explore conduction to round out understanding of energy transfer and apply the understanding with an engineering challenge to insulate a model house.

Investigation 6: Air Flow—Apply the concept of energy transfer by convection, radiation, and conduction to develop a model of global wind patterns.

Investigation 7: Water in the Air—Focus on the wet part of weather by investigating phase change to understand cloud formation and precipitation.

Investigation 8: The Water Planet—Learn that the water cycle is complex and involves water everywhere in the global environment.

Investigation 9: Climate over Time—Refine the distinction between weather and climate, and consider evidence for climate change.

Investigation 10: Meteorology—Pull together all the physical science concepts students learned in the course to explain weather.