by Duane Friend
University of Illinois Extension has many resources available for teachers to use in and out of the classroom. In the area of weather and earth science, there are several websites and YouTube videos that are both interactive and fun to use.
Riding the Winds with Kalani (http://extension.illinois.edu/kalani) is designed for kindergarten to 2nd grade levels to gain knowledge about the weather. The student section of this site is designed for young readers to go through each screen and read the words or listen to the narrative. Animations have been provided to enhance the learning of weather processes. This website has received several awards, and is available in English, Spanish, Chinese and Korean.
Tree House Weather Kids (https://extension.illinois.edu/treehouse/) is designed for teachers and students in the 5th – 8th grades. It provides basic information on weather topics such as winds, moisture, air pressure, seasons and storms. Student activities include identifying clouds, forecasting weather and making a weather comic. The website is also available in Spanish.
Over 15 YouTube videos on weather topics such as lightning, clouds and the greenhouse effect can be found at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLIq7XlTOe3akG5dgVod_X-3facAp5PLHZ (or do a search for Illinois Extension YouTube weather). The videos are about two minutes long and designed for elementary through junior high levels.
Shake, Rattle and Slide (http://extension.illinois.edu/earth/) is designed in English and Spanish for students in 5th – 8th grade to learn how forces on and inside the earth work to shape our world. Two major landform shaping processes, plate tectonics and continental glaciations, are discussed.
The All-Star River Explorers (http://extension.illinois.edu/rivers/) introduce students in 4th – 8th grades the basics of hydrology and increase their understanding of how rivers are formed and their importance in our lives. Activities will enhance students’ skills in math, science, language arts, social studies and art.
For looking at other Extension resources, visit our main page at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/state/index.php.