IISG’s Weather and Climate Toolkit
Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant (IISG) has created a weather and climate education toolkit where teachers—whether parents, home school tutors or licensed professionals—can find resources on the topics of weather, climate and climate change. The toolkit provides a sortable list of external resources and can be filtered by grade level, specific weather and climate subtopics or geographic locations, learning mode and more. Filtering by scale can identify educational resources unique to the Great Lakes. Many of the lesson plans and activities in this curated catalog of resources can be used as-is or adapted for virtual learning and at-home teaching environments.
External Curriculum Materials
How Big is a Crowd?
In this teacher-facilitated activity, learners will construct the five Great Lakes from string and use wrapped candy or peanuts in shells to investigate the impacts of population centers on Great Lakes fish
production and water quality. Students learn to compare the relative sizes of the five Great Lakes and their human populations, as well as describe some of the problems that arise when many people
depend on a limited resource.
How Can Disappearances Within the Triangle Be Explained?
Investigating multiple hypotheses, students discuss the values of using several data types and sources to
solve a science problem, demonstrate how bathymetric charts are used and constructed, demonstrate how weather information is mapped and interpreted, and explain how scientists use multiple working
hypotheses to solve complex problems.
What is the Great Lakes Triangle?
Analyzing multiple sets of data, students learn to demonstrate an ability to perceive patterns in a set of data, explain how scientific habits of mind should include the seeking of logical explanations for “mysterious” happenings.
Where Should I Relocate in the Great Lakes Region?
This activity will allow students to describe the Great Lakes region using a map and identify some of the resources the region has to offer. Also, by using maps and graphs students can demonstrate how they can provide information for decision making. Students will describe a decision making process by which people can evaluate a geographic area as a possible home site.
Great Lakes Overview Presentation
A 26-minute video introduction to the Great Lakes watershed.
External Curriculum Materials
Great Lakes Basin Map and Bathymetric Profile
8.5″ X 11″ color map of the Great Lakes’ watersheds including a bathymetric (depth) profile
Great Lakes Basin Map
8.5″ X 11″ printable black and white basin map
How long does it take water to flow through the Great Lakes basin?
Water that is in a lake does not stay in that lake. Where does the water go? The length of time that it takes for the amount of water in a lake to be completely replaced (enter the lake) is called retention time. Each of the Great Lakes has a different retention time. Construct an appropriate model of the water flow of the Great Lakes learn about retention time and replacement time, and how how Lake Superior affects the dynamics of water flow, retention time and flushing rates for the Great Lakes system.
How does water move in the Great Lakes basin?
You are familiar with the water cycle. The sun heats the surface of the earth, water evaporates, water vapor rises in the atmosphere cools and condenses, precipitation falls and then water flows in the streams, rivers, lakes and oceans. In this activity you will find out how water moves in the Great Lakes system.