Materials List: newspapers, resource books, Internet access, basic classroom art materials
Engage the students in a discussion of the Sunís effect on Earth processes and various types of weather. Prompt the discussion using the following questions:
∑ What are some of the jobs of the Sun? (to provide light energy used to heat the air, land, and water of the Earth; to keep us warm)
∑ What kinds of things does the Sun allow you to do everyday? (answers will vary)
Remind students that the water cycle demonstrates how the energy from the Sun heats the Earthís surface water so that it evaporates. This water vapor then is carried into the atmosphere where it is cooler. This cooler temperature causes the water vapor to condense into clouds. When the particles of water in the clouds accumulate or gather together, they fall back to Earth as precipitation such as rain or snow. The precipitation collects and then evaporation occurs, beginning the cycle once again.
The students will collect information about the Sun from weather charts in the newspaper, in resource books, or on the Internet (see resources) to predict and draw conclusions about the Sunís effect on Earthís processes and weather patterns. The students can work in collaborative groups to complete a project that will demonstrate their understanding of the Sun and/or weather. These projects could consist of drawings, flow charts, written reports, or dioramas. Student understanding will be demonstrated as they make a class presentation to explain their projects.