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Log Cabin in a Thunderstorm

Draw and write about stormy settings, incorporating details about weather safety and how storms occur.

  • Grade 3
    Grade 4
    Grade 5
  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Directions

    1. Create a whole-class K-W-L chart (what you KNOW; what you WANT to learn; and what you LEARNED) about electrical storms. Share ideas about how lightning and thunder occur. Pose questions about how meteorologists forecast stormy weather. Work together to search for answers to your questions, then share information with the group. Add this information to the K-W-L chart (what you Learned).
    2. Students use Crayola® Crayons to draw a safe cabin, house, or other dwelling in a stormy setting. For example, show storm clouds, bright bolts of lightning, and pelting raindrops all around the structure. Leave a wide border around the outside of the paper.
    3. With a craft stick, notch the side of an unwrapped crayon in several places. Rub the side of the crayon around the border of the paper to create several wide stripes. Add patterned symbols such as clouds, raindrops, and lightning in each stripe by pressing hard with crayons.
    4. Students write as though you were comforting a younger person safe inside the cabin with them during the storm. Find comforting ways to explain the lightning, thunder, wind, and rain. Tell the younger person how you are both staying safe from the storm.
    5. Students share their writing and log cabin in a storm art with classmates.
  • Standards

    LA: Explain the relationships or interactions between two or more individuals, events, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text based on specific information in the text.

    LA: Integrate information from several texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.

    LA: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.

    LA: Summarize a written text read aloud or information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.

    LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.

    SCI: Construct models to describe weather and climate patterns which are produced by the interactions among the atmosphere, the ocean, and landforms.

    SS: Describe and speculate about physical system changes, such as seasons, climate and weather, and the water cycle.

    SS: Explore factors that contribute to one's personal identity such as interests, capabilities, and perceptions.

    VA: Intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.

    VA: Select and use the qualities of structures and functions of art to improve communication of ideas.

  • Adaptations

    Possible classroom resources include: Thunderstorms by Chana Stiefel; 21st Century Ultimate Guide to Tornadoes and Severe Thunderstorms by National Weather Service

    What is it like to be a meteorologist? Students investigate this career, the education, and experience necessary to accurately predict the weather. Who is Dr. Joel A. Myers? What is AccuWeather? What impact has this meteorologist had on the weather industry? Research these questions and be prepared to share your new knowledge with classmates.

    What is a tsunami? Students research these storms and prepare a history of documented tsunamis. Where do they generally occur? What type of destruction do they do? What steps do people have to take to stay safe when a tsunami may occur?

    Students construct a survey of places that are safest during a storm. Students write a list of safety practices and precautions to follow for a variety of storms common in their home area.


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  • Creativity.
  • Capacity.
  • Collaboration.
  • Change.
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