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When LIghtning Strikes

A Lesson Plan and Resources About Thunderstorms and LIghtning

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Objectives:

  • The students will learn about thunderstorms.

  • The students will be able to explain what causes a thunderstorm.

  • The students will be able to explain what causes lightning.

  • The students will be able to explain when thunderstorms are most likely to occur.

  • The students will learn the equation for determining the distance a thunderstorm is from them.

Questions that encompasses the objective:

  • Think about a thunderstorm. If a thunderstorm was to happen right now, what would we experience?

  • Can you describe what we hear and see during a thunderstorm?

Prepare the Learner: Activating Prior Knowledge. 

How will students prior knowledge be activated?

Warm up by asking students:

  • What do you know about thunder and lightning?

Common Core State Standards:

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.2.1

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.2.1 B

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.2.4

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.2.2

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.3.2

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.3.2 B

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.3.1

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.3.4

Materials and Free Resources to Download for this Lesson: 

Adapted From: the website met.ie http://www.met.ie/education/pdfs_eng/Lesson%20Plan%20Thunder%20and%20Lightning.pdf

Unit Resources:

Input:
What is the most important content in this lesson?
To reach this lesson’s objective, students need to understand:

  • The definitions to the terms: severe thunderstorm watch, severe thunderstorm warning, downdraft, and updraft.

  • What causes thunder and lightning.

  • When a thunderstorm is most likely going to occur.

  • The equation for determining the distance a thunderstorm is from them.

How will the learning of this content be facilitated?

  • After the video discussion is done, the teacher will begin presenting the information on weather. If it is possible, project each page of the teacher’s copy of the “All About Weather” Science Journal worksheet onto the board using a projector or put into a PowerPoint document and project.  The teacher’s copy of the journal has certain words/phrases that are bolded red and highlighted. It is important the teacher explain to the students those words/phrases are to be highlighted in their (students) journal. For this lesson, the teacher should review these pages:

  • Page 37: Thunderstorm Terms

** This page reviews important terms related to thunderstorms**

  • Pages 38: What Causes a Thunderstorm?

**This page reviews the reasons a thunderstorm occurs**

  • Pages 39: What is Lightning?

**This page reviews the cause of lightning**

  • Page 40: How Far Away is the Storm?

**This page explains/teaches the equation that is used to determine how far away a thunderstorm is**

  • After the information has been presented, the students will participate in the experiment “Let’s Make a Thunderstorm”. 

**Please refer to the experiment guide that comes in the materials section of the lesson plan**

 

  • For the closure, the teacher should review the vocabulary and/or revisit any topics/ content that may have been unclear to the students.

  • As a final lesson assessment, have the students work on the “What Did You Learn?” lesson assessment worksheet.

Time/Application
3-5 minutes
Guided Introduction

Review the class/ agenda with the students:

10 minutes

Introductory Video: “Thunderstorm- Video Learning- WizScience,com”

  • After the video is over, begin a discussion about the content.

15 Minutes

Thunderstorm Terms | What Causes a Thunderstorm? |

  • Instruct the students to open to page 37 in their science journals.

  • Project each page of the science journal onto the board either through a projector or PowerPoint presentation.

  • The teacher copy has bolded red and highlighted words. The students will highlight those words in their science journal.

  • Begin presenting the information. The pages that will be presented include: pages 37-40.

25 Minutes

Experiment: Let’s Make a Thunderstorm

  • Hand out the “Let’s Make a Thunderstorm” experiment worksheet

  • Instruct the students to break into groups of three.

  • Review both experiments with the students.

  • Give each group the experiment materials.

  • Instruct the students to complete the “Let’s Make a Thunderstorm” worksheet.

  • Once the groups have completed the experiment and worksheets, reconvene and discuss the content.

10 minutes

Closure

  • For the closure, the teacher should review the vocabulary and/or revisit any topics/ content that may have been unclear to the students.

  • As a final lesson assessment, have the students work on the “What Did You Learn?” lesson assessment worksheet.


Individualized Instruction/Scaffolding

English Language Learners will be supported in this lesson through data-based heterogeneous grouping, verbal and written repetition of new vocabulary words, and multiple representation of vocabulary words through printed images and video.

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