Application Project Plan (APP) Planning Sheet


Lori Willey and Janet Murphy

Tentative Title

Lesson #1: Weather and Water Cycle

Target Audience
Grade 4 students (23)

Brief Description

These lessons are the three collaborative lessons that we did as a part of a larger four week unit on weather.


  1. To introduce students to common weather sayings.
  2. To help students understand the scientific background behind weather proverbs.
  3. To have students evaluate the validity of common weather sayings.
  4. To have students evaluate websites critically as research tools.
  5. To generate discussion about commonly accepted sayings and conduct research as to their origin.
  6. To have students share their research and findings both orally and in a hallway presentation

Proposed Activities

  1. Full group discussion about weather predicting before the reliable and sophisticated instruments that meteorologists use today. Acquaint students with the idea that our forefathers looked to the sky, the earth, their joints and muscles and animal life to predict the weather.
  2. Cards will be distributed to the students with weather saying on the front. Students will ask 10 classmates if they are familiar with the saying and if they believe what it means. Students will share results.
  3. Students will research the validity of their weather saying in pairs. They will be required to find out if the saying was scientifically based while using credible sources.
  4. In the computer lab, students will learn to evaluate the credibility of websites.
  5. Follow up with additional weather related research on websites chosen by teacher.
  6. Students will report their findings to their classmates.
  7. Students will create a bulletin board for the hallway. Using a folded piece of construction paper, students will write their proverb on the outside of the flap, and when lifted up a literal and scientific explanation will be revealed.
  8. Students will learn how to cite their sources and then will cite the websites and books used. They will also give a brief explanation as to the credibility of the websites giving specific website evaluation criteria.

Weather Proverb Worksheet:

Click the link below and then scroll to the bottom of my webpage to see the photostory.
Weather Folklore Bulletin Board
edheads weather prediciting game
Website Evaluation Powerpoint

Cards with weather sayings on them to be investigated.
Online access to research websites.
Templates for children to explain their assigned saying, assess its validity, and research its origin.
Grading rubric.
A January Fog will Freeze a Hog, by Hubert Davis
A Book of Weather Lore, by Edward Dolan
Wolff, Barbara. Evening Gray, Morning Red. New York: Macmillan, c1976
Lockhart, Gary The Weather Companion: an album of meteorological history, science, legend, and folklore. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., c1988
Dolan, Edward F. The Old Farmer's Almanac of Weather Lore: The fact and fancy behind weather predictions, superstitions, oldtime sayings and traditions. Dublin, NH: Yankee Publishing, c1988.

Steps six and seven

Weather Sources

Here's a clip from "The Perfect Storm" showing the rogue wave that capsized the boat.
The Perfect Storm - The Final Fight.mp4
I thought this might be interesting as well. It's a compilation of videos of real rogue waves. Kind of cool to watch it before/after seeing the Perfect Storm clip.
Rogue Waves.mp4

Scene from "The Day After Tomorrow" where NYC is flooded by a tsunami wave.
The Day After Tomorrow - N.Y. Tsunami.mp4

Another "Day After Tomorrow" scene, this time featuring tornadoes. This movie is full of great stuff.
The Day After Tomorrow - L.A. Tornados.mp4

A clip from the Korean movie "Tidal Wave." No Korean language experience required for this.
Tidal Wave Scene - Korean Film (Scary).flv

Scene from Twister.
Twister (Jan de Bont) - The First Tornado Scene.mp4

The Hurricane, a 1937 film.
The Hurricane (1937 film).mp4


"The Day After Tomorrow" presentation

Tentative Title

Lesson #2: Wild Weather: Hurricanes and Tornadoes

Target Audience
Grade 4 students (23)

Brief Description


1. To introduce students to earth’s wild weather.
2. To help students learn about the specific weather conditions that result in a tornado or a hurricane.
3. To identify which storms are considered severe weather, how they begin, how are they measured, and how are they predicted.
4. To evaluate how “Hollywood” distorts scientific facts and discuss why.
5. Generate discussion about the impact of Hollywood’s distortion of scientific fact upon audiences.
6. Individual and teams of students will participate in a storm debate, presenting their information and convincing the listeners that their storm is the most wild.

Proposed Activities

1. Students will be broken into two equal groups, each with a teacher. First they will collectively chart what they already know about their assigned severe weather. (on sticky notes and then moved to poster)
2. Working together or alone, students will use reading material to discover some facts about their storm. They will be guided to find out specific information such as size, duration, destruction, prediction, and measurement of storm.
3. Using pictures and powerpoint, the teacher will synthesize the information that the children have found and collect this data on a worksheet for the kids to share.
4. Students will pair up with another student from the opposite group and “teach” their severe weather to the classmate from the other group. (jigsaw learning)
5. In the computer lab, using an Inspiration document, the students will make a Venn Diagram comparing hurricanes and tornadoes. (teacher made- students click and drag components, including photographs, to proper spots) Once completed, students can print and then watch the two non-fiction hyperlinked videos that are imbedded into the Inspiration document.
6. Students will watch and discuss small clips from movies with severe weather. They will critically analyze what is factually true and what is a distortion of science. They will explain both orally and written.
7. Students will share their results, thoughts, feelings and opinions in a class discussion.
Create rubric to grade debate based upon your own criteria.

Hurricanes Vs. Tornadoes Venn Diagram:


  • Movie clips from movies depicting severe weather such as Twister, Flood, The Day After Tomorrow.
  • Age appropriate non-fiction movie clips and documentaries on hurricanes, tsunamis and tornadoes.
  • Can it Rain Cats and Dogs, Melvin and Gilda Berger
  • Hurricanes, Tsunamis, and other Natural Disasters,Andrew Langley
  • A January fog will freeze a hog, and other weather folklore. New York: Crown, c1977.
    Weather. Danbury, CT: Grolier, 1991.
    Allaby, Michael. How the weather works. Pleasantville, N.Y: Reader's Digest Association, c1995.
    Allen, Missy. Dangerous natural phenomena. New York: Chelsea House, c1993.
    Burroughs, William J. Weather. Alexandria, Va: The Nature Company Time-Life Books, 1996.
  • Cerveny, Randall S. Freaks of the storm: from flying cows to stealing thunder, the world's strangest true weather stories. New York: Thunder's Mouth Press, c2006.
  • Challoner, Jack. Hurricane & tornado . London New York : DK, 2004. Cosgrove, Brian. Weather. New York: Knopf Distributed by Random House, 1991.
    Chambers, Catherine. Hurricane. Chicago: Heinemann Library, c2002.
    Chambers, Catherine. Tornado. Chicago: Heinemann Library, c2002.
    Cole, Joanna. The magic school bus inside a hurricane . New York : Scholastic, [1997], c1995.
  • De Paola, Tomie. The cloud book . New York : Holiday House, c1975.
  • Gibbons, Gail Tornadoes. New York : Holiday House, c2009
  • Gibbons, Gail. Weather forecasting. New York: Four Winds, c1987.
    Gibbons, Gail. Weather words and what they mean. New York: Holiday House, c1990.
  • Haslam, Andrew. Weather. Chicago: World Book/Two-Can, 1997.
    Hiscock, Bruce. The big storm. New York: Atheneum Maxwell Macmillan International, c1993.
  • Lauber, Patricia. Hurricanes.
    Martin, Claire. I can be a weather forecaster. Chicago: Childrens Press, 1987.
    Merk, Ann. Studying weather. Vero Beach, Fla: Rourke Publications, 1994.
    Merk, Ann. Weather signs. Vero Beach, Fla: Rourke Publications, 1994.
    O'Hare, Ted Weather Signs Vero Beach, Fla: Rourke Publications, 2003.
  • Olson, Nathan. Hurricanes. Mankato, Minn: Bridgestone Books, c2006.
  • Orr, Tamra. Weather . Ann Arbor, Mich. : Cherry Lake Pub, c2010.
    Rodgers, Alan. Cloud cover. Chicago: Heinemann Library, c2003.

    Rogers, Paul. What will the weather be like today?. New York: Greenwillow Books, 1990.
    Simon, Seymour. Storms. New York: Morrow, c1989.
  • Sohn, Emily. Weather and the water cycle: will it rain?. Chicago, Ill: Norwood House Press. c2012
  • Uhlberg, Myron A Storm Called Katrina Peachtree, c2011
  • White, Nancy. The magic school bus kicks up a storm : a book about weather . New York : Scholastic, c2000. Witty, Margot. A day in the life of a meteorologist. Mahwah, NJ: Troll, c1981.

  • www.femagov/kids/hurr.htm

lesson three-

Easybib Citation Tool
Citation Machine

Lesson #3: Education or Entertainment: Evaluate your Local Weatherman!

Great plan. Do you have the clips chosen yet? I would like to see the rubric. I posted a few questions about the evaluative judgments the students will apply.

Target Audience Grade 4 students (23)


1. To introduce students to important weather forecasting tools and terms. The students will be able to explain how air masses (fronts) form and affect weather.
2. The students will be able to read weather maps and interpret the symbols and terms. The students will be able to identify how meteorologists track and predict weather.
3. The students will evaluate their response to two local recorded weather reports. They will rate their responses in a rubric. Evaluative criteria is based on the meteorologist, accuracy of forecast, and the broadcasting format.
4. To generate discussion of which elements of the newscast most appealed to them and evaluate why.

5. To explain how non-scientific factors can impact a person’s response to and choice of a certain weatherman/forecast. Generate discussion.
6. Students will judge the credibilty, accuracy, and strengths and weaknesses of the weather forecast.
  • Recorded footage (from webpage) of weather forecasts for the same area for the same day.
  • Biographical background material on the credentials of each meteorologist. (from webpage)
  • Rate Your Local Weathercasts Rubric
  • Science textbook, Scott Foreman, Unit B lessons 3 and 4, plus leveled readers
  • Various examples of weather maps

  1. Teacher will provide appropriate background material for students to prepare them to watch the weather forecasts. In a variety of formats (small and large groups, cooperative learning and teacher led) students will identify all elements that go into preparing and understanding a weather forecast. The teacher will play a weather forecast, and the students will write down the questions that they have.
  2. Working together or alone, the students will read, write, and talk about the science of weather forecasting.
  3. The students will use the rubric to evaluate the weather forecasts of two local meteorologists. They will watch, discuss, and compare the two weather forecasts analyzing many different elements. (see rubric)
  4. Students will discuss and defend the weather forecast they prefer and why in pairs. (hopefully with someone of differing opinion)
  5. In graded class conversation (everyone is required to offer at least one opinion statement and support it, no raising hands- you need to listen respectfully and contribute appropriately, you cannot talk until at least two people have contributed between your last statement) students will share their results, thoughts, and opinions on the two weathercasts and meteorologists.
meteorologists websites

1. Students will write a short piece making a judgment about which weather forecast they preferred and why. They must rank the importance of the rubric elements and defend their choice.

Weather Forcasting Worksheet:

Weather Forecasting Rubric, Front:

Weather Forecasting Rubric, Back:


1. Students can evaluate/compare a local weather forecast to a national one.
2. Students can evaluate a weather forecast for soley science vs. entertainment value.
3. Students can survey other students and adults for information about why they choose the weather forecast that they tune into.