Wind and Clouds Aloft – Standards


The activities in this unit help children understand the basic concepts in the Disciplinary Core Ideas listed here. You can use the following list as a guide for lesson planning. These Disciplinary Core Ideas are taken from Grade Band Endpoints in A Framework for K-12 Science Education. Additionally, our activities give children opportunities to engage in many of the Science and Engineering Practices and reflect on the Crosscutting Concepts as identified in the Next Generation Science Standards.

Grades K-2 Disciplinary Core Ideas
PS1A: Different kinds of matter exist and many of them can be either solid or liquid, depending on temperature. A great variety of objects can be built up from a small set of pieces. p.108
PS1B: Heating or cooling a substance may cause changes that can be observed. p.110
PS3B: Sunlight warms Earth’s surface. p.125
ESS2D: Weather is the combination of sunlight, wind, snow or rain, and temperature in a particular region at a particular time. People measure these conditions to describe and record the weather and to notice patterns over time. p.188
ESS3B: Some kinds of severe weather are more likely than others in a given region. p.193

Grades 3-5 Disciplinary Core Ideas
PS1A: Matter of any type can be subdivided into particles that are too small to see, but even then the matter still exists and can be detected by other means. For example a model showing that gases are made from matter particles that are too small to see and are moving freely around in space can explain many observations, including the inflation and shape of a balloon; the effects of air on larger particles or objects; and the appearance of visible scale water droplets in condensation, fog, and by extension, also in clouds or the contrails of a jet. p.108
PS3B: Energy is present whenever there are moving objects, sound, light, or heat…Energy can also be transferred from place to place by electric currents, which can then be used locally to produce motion, sound, heat, or light. The currents may have been produced to begin with by transforming the energy of motion into electrical energy (e.g., moving water driving a spinning turbine which generates electric currents). p.125
ESS2A: Winds and clouds in the atmosphere interact with the landforms to determine patterns of weather. p.181
ESS2C: Water is found almost everywhere on Earth: as vapor; as fog or clouds in the atmosphere; as rain or snow falling from clouds; as ice, snow, and running water on land and in the ocean; and as groundwater beneath the surface. p.185
ESS2D: Weather is the minute-by-minute to day-by-day variation of the atmosphere’s condition on a local scale. Scientists record the patterns of the weather across different times and areas so that they can make predictions about what kind of weather might happen next. p.188
ESS3A: Some resources are renewable over time, and others are not. p.192
ESS3B: A variety of hazards result from natural processes (e.g., earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, severe weather, floods, coastal erosion). p.193

Grades 6-8 Disciplinary Core Ideas
ESS2A: All Earth processes are the result of energy flowing and matter cycling within and among the planet’s systems. p.181
ESS2C: The complex patterns of the changes and the movement of water in the atmosphere, determined by winds, landforms, and ocean temperatures and currents, are major determinants of local weather patterns. p.185
ESS2D: Weather and climate are influenced by interactions involving sunlight, the ocean, the atmosphere, ice, landforms, and living things. Because these patterns are so complex, weather can be predicted only probabilistically. p.188
ESS3A: Renewable energy resources, and the technologies to exploit them, are being rapidly developed. p.192


In addition to science content, activities in this unit also can help students to practice the following mathematics and language arts concepts. The Common Core Standards listed here are in addition to the ones that our activities typically address, as listed in the Four Winds document, The Nature Program: Alignment with Learning Standards.

Grades 3-5 Common Core Standards
Reading for Informational Text Standard 7: Draw on information from multiple print or digital resources, demonstrating the ability to locate an answer to a question quickly or to solve a problem efficiently.
Reading Foundational Skills Standard 3: Decode words with common Latin suffixes.
Language Standard 4: Use common, grade-appropriate Greek and Latin affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of a word.

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