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CNN Student News Learning Activity: Winter Weather

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  • Students will learn about winter weather events
  • Students will examine the causes and effects of winter weather events
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(CNN Student News) -- Students will learn about different winter weather events, their causes and effects, and the regions most likely to experience them.


Generate a class discussion about different types of weather that occur during the winter season. Then, share the following list of winter weather terms with students:

  1. Alberta clipper
  2. blizzard
  3. heavy snow
  4. ice storm
  5. lake effect snow storm
  6. Nor'easter
  7. sleet
  8. snow shadow
  9. wind chill warning
  10. winter cold front

Direct each student to select a term from the list, and research the following:

  1. a definition of the term;
  2. a description of the meteorological causes and effects of the weather event;
  3. regions where the event is most likely to occur;
  4. any other pertinent information about the event, including an illustration, if applicable.

As part of their research, students should examine the benefits of forecasting winter weather and the preparations that people can make for severe winter weather events. After completing their research, challenge students to organize their findings in a graphic organizer and share their information with the class.

Extension: Have each student assume the role of a meteorologist and give a report on his or her weather event, using the information that he or she gathered to describe the event to the audience.

Correlated Standards


Content Standard F: Science in Personal and Social Perspectives

As a result of activities in grades 5-8, all students should develop understanding of
• Natural hazards
• Risks and benefits
• Science and technology in society

Content Standard D: Earth and Space Science

As a result of their activities in grades 9-12, all students should develop an understanding of
• Energy in the earth system
• Geochemical cycles

The National Science Education Standards ( are published by the National Academies Press (

Social Studies


Standard III. People, Places, and Environment: Social studies programs should include experiences that provide for the study of people, places, and environments.

The Curriculum Standards for Social Studies ( are published by the National Council for Social Studies (

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