TeachersFirst's Hurricane Resources

Other TeachersFirst Special Topics Collections

This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst is selected to help teachers and students understand hurricanes and the historic events surrounding major hurricanes. Explore these resources during a unit on weather or disasters and include related projects and classroom activities.  Classrooms in hurricane-prone areas may want to stop to observe anniversaries of local hurricane history or even to conduct local history projects in conjunction with some of these starter resources. Turn frightening natural disasters into positive learning using the background on these helpful sites.

 

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Disaster Fact Sheets - FEMA

Grades
K to 6
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Learn what to do before, during, and after a disaster with these fact sheets from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency). Select a topic to view information in PDF format from ...more
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Learn what to do before, during, and after a disaster with these fact sheets from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency). Select a topic to view information in PDF format from the several available types of disasters including hurricane, drought, tornado, and more. Each fact sheet is two pages long and includes a quick fact check, words to know, and advice for dealing with the disaster.

tag(s): disasters (34), earthquakes (42), fire safety (14), floods (11), heat (15), hurricanes (28), red ribbon week (9), snow (16), tornadoes (12), tsunamis (14), weather (156)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site for use during your weather unit as an introduction to types of severe weather. One of the fact sheets discusses home fires and is perfect to include with Red Ribbon Week activities. After sharing disaster facts with students, ask students to create word clouds using vocabulary terms related to any specific type of disaster. Improve student learning by using a site like Word It Out, reviewed here, to easily create custom word clouds. Upon completion of your unit, ask students to create a book sharing their tips and advice for dealing with disasters. Reshape and redefine learning by using an interactive book creation tool like Book Creator, reviewed here. Book Creator offers tools for making online books that include images, videos, audio, and more.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Extreme Event - Koshland Science Museum

Grades
8 to 12
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Extreme Event is a crisis problem-solving game for groups of 12 or more players with a minimum age of 14 years old. Facilitators set up a room and time for ...more
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Extreme Event is a crisis problem-solving game for groups of 12 or more players with a minimum age of 14 years old. Facilitators set up a room and time for participants, and games typically take about an hour to complete. Choose from three scenarios - hurricane, flood, or earthquake. Download all game materials from the site including PDF cards, sounds, and visual effects. The videos in the classroom activity section reside on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable.

tag(s): critical thinking (100), earthquakes (42), floods (11), hurricanes (28), logic (164), problem solving (214)

In the Classroom

Use the materials found on Extreme Event as a hands-on lesson in problem-solving, short and long term planning, and building community. Use an online tool such as Interactive Three Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast different strategies needed to solve problems in different crisis situations. Challenge students to create a brochure or newsletter sharing their findings. Are you integrating technology in your class? Instead of the traditional paper brochure use Lucidpress, reviewed here, or if you are more experienced use Sway, reviewed here, and create a newsletter. If you complete this activity with different classes, share results from the different games as part of your discussions on your problem-solving decisions.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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SciJinks: Its All About Weather! - NOAA/NASA

Grades
3 to 12
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SciJinks offers informative articles and games geared toward middle school students as they learn about weather, satellite meteorology, and Earth science. Use the list on the left side...more
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SciJinks offers informative articles and games geared toward middle school students as they learn about weather, satellite meteorology, and Earth science. Use the list on the left side of the page to choose from topics, answers, find games, learn about people, and much more. Select the Topics section to find many ideas for use in science classrooms including content aligned to Next Generation Science Standards.

tag(s): atmosphere (21), careers (131), hurricanes (28), oceans (128), science fairs (21), scientific method (47), scientists (61), seasons (32), space (202), weather (156)

In the Classroom

Although geared toward middle school students and educators, anyone who teaches weather will want to take the time to explore this site for student and teacher resources. Use the educators section to find activities, science fair ideas, and content aligned to standards. Share the people portion of the site during your career exploration activities. Share a link to games and activities on classroom computers and your class website. Upon completing activities, have students create an online or printed comic about an element of weather, climate, meteorology, or any aspect of Earth science. Use a tool such as Printable Comic Strip Templates, reviewed here, for a nontech rough and final draft. If you're new to using technology with your students, or teach younger students enhance their learning and augment techology use with ToonyTool, reviewed here, for their final drafts. To to enhance learning and modify tech use in your class for more experienced, older students try Write Comics, reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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NASA Online - knowitall.org

Grades
3 to 9
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NASA Online provides award-winning videos and interactives promoting STEM learning corresponding to the TV series for children, The NASA SciFiles. Each video program is accompanied...more
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NASA Online provides award-winning videos and interactives promoting STEM learning corresponding to the TV series for children, The NASA SciFiles. Each video program is accompanied with a web component, which reinforces and extends the instructional objectives and establishes a connection between the math, science, and technology concepts taught in the classroom and the math, science, and technology used everyday by NASA researchers. Choose from interactive math and science activities or view video excerpts from the series. Topics include basic concepts such as electricity, geometry, and sound. Click the NASA SciFiles to find teaching resources.

tag(s): atmosphere (21), charts and graphs (156), electricity (61), hurricanes (28), light (46), matter (46), nasa (27), ratios (51), sound (70), STEM (218)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these entertaining videos to introduce science concepts. Share interactives on classroom computers or embed on your class web page for students to use at home. After exploring videos and interactives on the site, have students create a multimedia presentation using Slidestory, reviewed here. This site allows you to narrate a picture. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted to be reproduced), and then narrate the photo as if it is a news report.

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Weather Underground - Hurricane and Tropical Cyclones

Grades
6 to 12
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Stay current with information about the latest hurricanes and tropical cyclones. Find articles about the potential threat of current hurricanes, Hurricane Preparedness, and Cyclone...more
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Stay current with information about the latest hurricanes and tropical cyclones. Find articles about the potential threat of current hurricanes, Hurricane Preparedness, and Cyclone Energy. From the drop-down menu on the right read various articles about Storm Surges, find Blank Tracking Charts (in PDF format), Online Resources, and more. Also find a Hurricane Archive with tracking maps and aerial photos for past hurricanes. From the top menu find many other weather issues, information about wild fires, and much more.

tag(s): disasters (34), hurricanes (28), weather (156)

In the Classroom

Introduce the class to the most current hurricanes forming with a projector or interactive whiteboard. Challenge students to find similar hurricanes from the past and ask them to make a prediction about the current one. Have them prove their predictions using a tool like the interactive Venn Diagram Three Circle,reviewed here, or the Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here.

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When Nature Strikes: Science of Natural Hazards - NBC Learn

Grades
5 to 12
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Explore the science behind the world's worst natural disasters. These ten videos are hosted by Dr. Marshall Shepherd of the University of Georgia and The Weather Channel in partnership...more
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Explore the science behind the world's worst natural disasters. These ten videos are hosted by Dr. Marshall Shepherd of the University of Georgia and The Weather Channel in partnership with NBC Learn and the National Science Foundation. Topics include Wildfires, Volcanoes, Tsunamis, Tornadoes, Space Weather, Landslides, Hurricanes, Flash Floods, and Earthquakes. Videos are approximately 5 to 6 minutes in length and include transcripts. Scientists' interviews explain the stunning scenes of nature's havoc. Although part of a larger site that charges for access, these videos are free.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): earthquakes (42), floods (11), hurricanes (28), natural disasters (15), scientists (61), tornadoes (12), tsunamis (14), volcanoes (50), weather (156)

In the Classroom

Use this site as an anticipatory set or "activator" to introduce a unit or lesson on the weather. Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Have each group choose a video to use as a launching pad for further study. Enhance their learning with the challenge to use YiNote, reviewed here, which is a Chrome extension for taking notes online on the video while watching it. Have students create an annotated, narrated image, including text boxes and related links, using a tool such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Place the videos on your classroom website or blog for students to explore on their own. Flip your instruction, and have your scientists watch the videos before class time to build background knowledge. Review nonfiction reading strategies with students before reading the transcripts. Have students investigate STEM careers by researching the jobs of the scientists interviewed in the videos.

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Sky Diary - Chris Kidler

Grades
2 to 7
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Sky Diary offers facts for students about hurricanes, tornadoes, lightning, and storm chasing. Choose the link to each of the topics to find quick facts such as how tornadoes or ...more
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Sky Diary offers facts for students about hurricanes, tornadoes, lightning, and storm chasing. Choose the link to each of the topics to find quick facts such as how tornadoes or hurricanes form, measuring intensity of hurricanes and tornadoes, or safety precautions. The storm chasing portion of the site offers insight into a typical storm chase, reality vs tv, and how to become a storm chaser. This simple site contains a great deal of useful weather information for classroom use.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): careers (131), hurricanes (28), tornadoes (12), weather (156)

In the Classroom

Share information from the site on your interactive whiteboard during weather, career, or storm preparedness units. Challenge students to create an avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced). The avatars can be used to explain the development of hurricanes or tornadoes, or severe weather safety instructions. Use a site such as FotoFlexer, reviewed here.

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Stormpulse - Stormpulse

Grades
6 to 12
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Scroll through the earth to watch the current paths of tropical storms/hurricanes. View satellite imagery, news, up to date coastal weather, or view storm archives from 1850 to present....more
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Scroll through the earth to watch the current paths of tropical storms/hurricanes. View satellite imagery, news, up to date coastal weather, or view storm archives from 1850 to present. This is not considered an actual weather source but is an aggregate of information on storms. Probabilities of storms and hurricanes are given, based upon weather movement. Access information on the site by signing in through a LinkedIn account.

tag(s): hurricanes (28), weather (156)

In the Classroom

Watch storm movement and predict potential path. Use archives to determine common paths, areas where storms are more prevalent, change in numbers of hurricanes in different decades, etc. Use this site as a springboard for further research and better understanding of causes of hurricanes, factors that change the movement, destruction from hurricanes, or how best to prepare for hurricanes. Students can create traditional (poster, bulletin board) or multimedia presentations (newscasts, wiki, blog) on storms or even "create" a mythical storm of the future that follows predictable patterns, documenting it on a class weatherwiki. Some tool suggestions are (click on the tool name to access the review): PBWorks (wiki), Site123 (blog), Renderforest (newscast video), and Genial.ly (poster/bulletin board).

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Hurricanes - BBC

Grades
1 to 8
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This site is wonderfully done and has a wealth of knowledge. You will find an animated guide to hurricanes (a must-see), quizzes, pictures of Hurricane Katrina (a year after ...more
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This site is wonderfully done and has a wealth of knowledge. You will find an animated guide to hurricanes (a must-see), quizzes, pictures of Hurricane Katrina (a year after the devastation), message boards, web chats, reference information about hurricanes, and more. The interactivities require FLASH,; however, there is plenty to learn from on this page.

tag(s): weather (156)

In the Classroom

You must try an interactive whiteboard to share the animated guide to hurricanes with your students - wow! It is very easy to understand and extremely informative. The animated guide truly helps students understand the complexities of hurricanes.

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Web Weather for Kids - University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

Grades
3 to 6
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Learn about clouds, hurricanes, thunderstorms, and blizzards with this kid-friendly weather site. Each weather phenomenon is presented with easy-to-understand text, interactive activities,...more
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Learn about clouds, hurricanes, thunderstorms, and blizzards with this kid-friendly weather site. Each weather phenomenon is presented with easy-to-understand text, interactive activities, and graphics. Includes a glossary of weather terms and teacher tips for incorporating the content into your science classroom. Aligned to National Science Education standards.

tag(s): hurricanes (28), weather (156)

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Hurricane & Tropical Storm Tracking

Grades
6 to 12
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A tracking resource from Terrapin Associates which provides current storm forecast tracks as well as animated tracks from past storms. ...more
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A tracking resource from Terrapin Associates which provides current storm forecast tracks as well as animated tracks from past storms.

tag(s): weather (156)

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Hurricane Guide - Miami Science Museum

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4 to 12
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The Miami Museum of Science is building this new site to help younger students understand hurricanes and how to prepare for them. The site includes lots of graphics showing how ...more
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The Miami Museum of Science is building this new site to help younger students understand hurricanes and how to prepare for them. The site includes lots of graphics showing how storms develop, as well as information on how to stay safe if there's a hurricane headed your way. The site includes a teachers guide, as well as a section for children who have survived a hurricane.

tag(s): weather (156)

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How Hurricanes Work - The Why Files - University of Wisconsin

Grades
4 to 12
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The Why Files "Sandy Strikes Eastern Seaboard" explains the science behind the formation and behavior of hurricanes using clear text and some neat, simple animations. This site is a...more
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The Why Files "Sandy Strikes Eastern Seaboard" explains the science behind the formation and behavior of hurricanes using clear text and some neat, simple animations. This site is a great introduction to these huge storms for younger students.

tag(s): weather (156)

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Case Study - Hurricane Andrew - University of Illinois

Grades
6 to 12
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A more detailed retrospective that examines the hurricane which did extensive damage in Florida in August, 1992. ...more
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A more detailed retrospective that examines the hurricane which did extensive damage in Florida in August, 1992.

tag(s): weather (156)

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Explanation of the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale - US Government

Grades
6 to 12
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Explanation of the Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale, which measures the strength of storms. ...more
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Explanation of the Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale, which measures the strength of storms.

tag(s): weather (156)

In the Classroom

Allow cooperative learning groups to explore this site during a lesson on Hurricanes and their categorization. Have groups explore the site, with the intentions of summarizing the information in a multimedia presentation. To show what they have learned from this site, challenge students to create an online infographic to share using Visme, reviewed here.

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National Hurricane Center - US Government

Grades
6 to 12
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The National Weather Service's home page for hurricane information, with links to satellite images, tracking forecasts, and storm warnings. This is the source for most of the commercially...more
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The National Weather Service's home page for hurricane information, with links to satellite images, tracking forecasts, and storm warnings. This is the source for most of the commercially available storm data available on the web.

tag(s): weather (156)

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