Atmosphere Learning Progression K-2

Created by Tina R Harte Last updated 4/26/2017

Lessons and Activities that align with the GLOBE Atmosphere Protocols, NGSS, and GLOBE Learning activities for the K-2 Mission Earth Atmosphere Learning Progression.

  • Do You Know That Clouds Have Names?

    Elementary GLOBE Storybook:In this science-based storybook, children learn that clouds have different names based on their appearance and position in the atmospheric column. Contrails, or condensation trails, are also discussed. The book is one of a series in the Elementary GLOBE unit designed to introduce students to the study of Earth system science (ESS). Each book has companion learning activities that complement the science covered in each story. Together, the books form an instructional unit that addresses ESS and related subjects (e.g., weather, water, seasons, soil, and aerosols).
  • Cloudscape

    Elementary GLOBE Learning Activity:Using information from their own observations, students construct a sky scene with trees and buildings as reference points on the ground and cloud types ordered by altitude in the sky. Students will describe clouds and then correlate their descriptions with the standard classifications of cloud types used by The GLOBE Program. Uses commonly-available or inexpensive materials (blank wall chart paper, cotton pillow batting, wax paper, white sheet, sheer white fabric, glue, markers or pencils, scissors, rulers).
    AAAS Benchmarks: 1B/P3
  • S'COOL Lesson: The Sky and the Dichotomous Key

    In this field activity, students observe clouds, and are introduced to dichotomous key to classify cloud types. Students also make weather observations of current weather and record and track changes in weather over time. Materials/equipment needed include weather instruments (thermometers and barometers) and graph paper. A student self-assessment rubric, vocabulary linked to an on-line glossary, a list of elementary level trade books on weather, and teacher notes and class management suggestions are provided.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E3
  • Cloud Fun

    Elementary GLOBE Learning Activity:n this activity, students create their own cumulus cloud out of white paper and mount it on blue paper. Students will also complete the Cloud Fun Student Activity Sheet that includes a description of the cloud and what the weather was like on the day the cloud was observed. Uses commonly available or inexpensive materials (blank wall chart paper, newspaper, construction paper, glue, markers or pencils). This is the 1st of 3 sets of learning activities that are companion activities to the Elementary GLOBE children's book, Do You Know That Clouds Have Names? Includes a teacher implementation guide.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 1B/P3
  • How Do Disaster Paths Affect People's Lives?

    The impacts of natural disasters are described in imaginary pen pal letters from peers who reside in the pathways of four authentic natural disasters: a volcanic lava flow in Hawaii, a volcanic ash cloud in Russia, a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico and flooding in the Midwestern U.S. Students must answer questions posed in the letters (included in the lesson), locate the impacted areas on a map, examine images of the disaster, research the Earth science processes involved and write back to the pen pal. The URL opens to the investigation directory, with links to teacher and student materials, lesson extensions, resources, teaching tips, and assessment strategies. This is Investigation 4 of four found in the Grades K-4 Module 4 of Mission Geography. The Mission Geography curriculum integrates data and images from NASA missions with the National Geography Standards. Each of the four investigations in Module 4, while related, can be done independently
    AAAS Benchmarks: 1A/E2, 12D/P3
  • The Air We Breathe

    This picture book is designed to introduce children to the Earth's atmosphere and its importance to life on Earth. It also introduces how the addition of new gases (e.g., ozone) contributes to changing the quality of air we breathe. With an understanding of how our atmosphere works, we can begin to understand how our activities may be contributing to some of those changes in air quality.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E4
  • Atmosphere Chapter-Cloud Watch

    Students observe cloud type and coverage and weather conditions over a five-day period and correlate these observations. Students make and test predictions using these observations. This is a learning activity associated with the Atmosphere chapter of the GLOBE Teacher Guide, and is supported by field protocols for study of the atmosphere.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E5
  • Making a Sundial

    Students will gain an understanding of the daily movement of the sun across the sky by conducting a set of simple, quantitative observations using a sundial they have constructed. A student work sheet accompanies the learning activity.This resource is part of the Atmosphere chapter of the GLOBE Teacher’s Guide.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E2bc
  • S'COOL Lesson: Introducing Temperature Measurements

    This activity introduces very young students to measurement, graphing and estimation as they learn how to use a thermometer. The resource includes teaching notes, assessment suggestions, and a vocabulary list linked to a glossary. This activity is related to the NASA CERES Students Cloud Observations Online (S'COOL) project
    AAAS Benchmarks: 1B/P2, 1B/E1
  • MY NASA DATA: Creating a Bar Graph

    In this activity, students will create a basic bar graph using authentic NASA data downloaded by the instructor. Step-by-step instructions for use of the MY NASA DATA Live Access Server (LAS) guide students through selecting a data set, importing the data into a spreadsheet, creating graphs, and analyzing data plots. The lesson provides detailed procedures, related links and sample graphs, follow-up questions, extensions, and teacher notes. Designed for student use, MY NASA DATA LAS samples micro datasets from large scientific data archives, and provides structured investigations engaging students in exploration of real data to answer real world questions
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E5, 4E/P1, 9A/P4
  • S'COOL Lesson: Weather BINGO

    In this activity, students play the familiar BINGO board game, using predetermined vocabulary terms. Includes detailed procedure and materials, a vocabulary section linked to an on-line glossary. This activity is related to NASA CERES Students' Cloud Observations Online (S'COOL) project.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E5
  • S'COOL Lesson: Imaginative Picture Writing

    This lesson provides an opportunity for students to express their ideas through literature. Teachers will read a story on clouds to students, then take students outside to observe actual clouds. Students will create drawings of what they see, identify different cloud types, and then pair their findings with other students to create a cloud presentation for the class. S'COOL engages students in making and reporting ground truth observations of clouds then comparing those observations with data from the CERES satellite instrument.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 4B/E3
  • Measuring Precipitation

    Students will design, build and then test a rain gauge to measure precipitation. By sharing their results, they will recognize the need for standardization and precision in scientific tools. All background information, student worksheets and images/photographs/data are included in these downloadable sections: Teacher’s Guide, Student Capture Sheet and PowerPoint Presentation. This activity uses the 5E instructional model and is part of the Survivor Earth series of one-hour lessons.
    AAAS Benchmarks: 3A/M2, 4B/M7