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Meteorology

Division: B – Middle School

NC Essential Standards Alignment: 7.E.1

Event Rules: See National Rules

Event Score Sheet: None

National Event Page: Here

Required Materials: Writing instrument

Clarifications:None

Description:

This event is usually done as stations that teams rotate through, or it can be done as a sit-down test event, or a combination of the two types.  Teams may be viewing any combination of models, pictures, diagrams/charts, or recorded/written descriptions. They will then be asked to answer questions (multiple choice, fill in the blank, short answer, etc)  related to the materials.  The topic for the 2020 tournament year is Severe Weather & Storms.

Materials:

Each team may bring two stand-alone non-programmable, non-graphing calculators and two  8.5” x 11” sheets of paper that may contain information on both sides in any form and from any source.

Scoring:

High score wins. Points are awarded for the quality and accuracy of responses.

Common Mistakes:

None

Questions Answered

Will students be expected to read graphs?  

Yes!  Graphs should be in every Sci Oly event.

For example: we could include a graph with days on the x-axis, and air temperature on the y-axis. The graph would show a sharp decrease in air temperature on one of the days (cold front).  Then we might ask: 

  • On what day did the air temperature change the most?
  • Did the air temperature increase or decrease?
  • What type of front went through the area on Day X, when the air temperature changed the most, a warm front or a cold front?
  • What type of weather most likely happened on Day X, when the air temperature changed the most?  (choices: cloudy, with some rain, OR sunny and clear skies, with no rain)

Where can I find charts that show recent weather conditions with time, like how pressure is changing with time, at a weather station near my school?

For the past few days of weather, one interactive web site that might help is https://www.wrh.noaa.gov/map/?&zoom=5&scroll_zoom=false&center=40,-97&boundaries=false,false,false,false,false,false,false,false,false&tab=observation&hazard=true&hazard_type=all&hazard_opacity=70&obs=true&obs_type=weather&elements=temp,wind,gust&temp_filter=-80,130&gust_filter=0,150&rh_filter=0,100&elev_filter=-300,14000&precip_filter=0.01,18&obs_popup=true&obs_density=60&obs_provider=ALL.  To see a site’s data, click on a site on the map.  Zoom in to see more sites pop up. Doesn’t look like pressure is included on the default graphs on the web page.  However, the pressure data are there in a table. A teacher could copy the pressure data even into MS Excel from the web page and make a graph for students to read.

The American Meteorological Society has a web page with meteograms (but not a lot of cities): https://www.ametsoc.org/amsedu/dstreme/metgram.html.  

I found a few other sites with meteograms but I haven’t dug into them too much.  The following web sites may be helpful: https://www.eol.ucar.edu/content/forecast-model-links

 

“Mesonets” are surface-based weather observation networks.  They have lots and lots of stations and are considered “high resolution”.  The Oklahoma Mesonet is one of the oldest ones – they’re a gold standard. They have meteograms – http://www.mesonet.org/index.php/weather/meteogram/.  So does a Mesonet program from New York State – e.g., http://www.nysmesonet.org/weather/meteogram#network=nysm&stid=olea  

What are all the symbols on the surface weather map that look like https://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/sfc/namccsfcwbg.gif or other ones up at https://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/html/sfc2.shtml?

https://www.weather.gov/jetstream/wxmaps 

https://www.weather.gov/jetstream/wxmaps_max

What is a haboob?

https://www.noaa.gov/stories/haboobs-phenomena-with-unusual-name-is-no-joke

https://www.weather.gov/safety/wind-dust-storm

http://www.atmo.arizona.edu/images/news/Aish_Article.pdf (more technical, but some good graphics in the 2nd half of document)

https://www.weather.gov/psr/DustWorkshops

Event Resources:

Meteorology 2019 Coaches Clinic Presentation (2020 Rules)
Meteorology 2018 Coaches Clinic Presentation (2019 rules)
2018 Meteorology Regional Test
2018 Meteorology State Test
Meteorology Test from 2016

NOAA’s Education twitter feed – https://twitter.com/noaaeducation

American Meteorological Society Education program twitter feed – https://twitter.com/AMSeducation

Archived storm reports from NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center:  https://www.spc.noaa.gov/exper/archive/event.php  Input a date and click “Get Data”.  (already included on NOAA’s Science Olympiad web page for Meteorology at  https://www.noaa.gov/education/resource-collections/special-topics-education-resources/2020-science-olympiad-meteorology)

Archived weather maps that were the day’s forecast, from NOAA’s Weather Prediction Center: https://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/noaa/noaa_archive.php (Select a date, click “Submit”

Archived watches from NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center: https://www.spc.noaa.gov/products/watch/.  Under “archived Convective Watches”, enter a date and click “Retrieve Watches”

Archived products from NOAA’s Storm Prediction Center in general: https://www.spc.noaa.gov/archive/ .  Enter a date, click “Retrieve X”.

Severe Weather & Storms:
2020 Science Olympiad: Meteorology – NOAA
Weather Wiz Kids – Tornados, Hurricanes, Rain and Floods, Safety, and many activities.
Hurricane Sandy – a summary
National Weather Service
Arizona Haboob of 2012
NOAA Weather Safety
Severe Storms Study Guide
NASA – Meteorology Educator’s Guide
Tropical Tidbits – great blog explaining current weather phenomena
American Meteorological Society – lots of good info and links

Climate:
2019 Science Olympiad Meteorology 
Weather World
NOAA – Climate
NOAA – Ten Climate Science Activities
Earth Climate Course
Earth Climate System – good notes
NOAA – Climate Education 
http://climatekids.nasa.gov/
NOAA – Climate
Good Climate Activity with answers
NASA Precipitation Education page, lots of good activities, scroll towards the bottom for a water cycle dice game

Media:

None