Weather and Climate

Contributor: Jodi Powell. Lesson ID: 10739

Whether you think about it or not, weather affects more than whether you wear a coat or shorts! Weather patterns create climates that affect all of life! Videos, articles, maps, and projects galore!


Earth Science, World

learning style
Auditory, Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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  • Do you live in a place where you experience the four seasons?
  • Do you prefer a cold winter night, watching snow fall outside the window?
  • Or perhaps you prefer the heat of the sun on a relaxing summer afternoon?

Weather and climate affect where people go and live as well as what they do.

  • How do weather and climate affect your daily life?
  • Do you have a favorite type of weather?

Maybe you like to ski, so cold, snowy winters are your favorite. Perhaps you're a beach-goer and live for the feel of the warm rays of the sun!

  • Is a cool fall night the perfect fit for you?

Climate and weather affect how you live, and even what you do.

First, let's differentiate between climate and weather.

Weather is the short-term changes in the air for a given place and time.

Climate is a region's average weather conditions over a long period.

The difference between weather and climate is explained in this National Geographic video, Earth: Climate and Weather - National Geographic - 24hToday:

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Watch this Basics of Geography: Climate video to learn more about climate:

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Learn more about what affects climate in Five Factors that Affect Climate from lhartscience:

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Since both wind and water can carry heat from place to place, each has a significant effect on climate and weather. Watch What is Wind? by SciShow:

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  • How do the oceans affect our weather?

It seems like a simple question, but watch The Role of Ocean Currents in Climate from Ann Morris for a more detailed response:

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The Earth consists of five main climate zones:

  • tropical
  • temperate
  • dry
  • polar
  • highland

Each of these divisions is then separated into subdivisions (Note that various resources categorize these zones slightly differently). View the map below to identify the different zones:

climate zone map

Then watch the video Climatic Zone - Logos Academy for a further explanation of these divisions:

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Next, read through the article, World Climates at The whole article is very informative, but you can just focus on the section at the bottom, beginning with "3 Basic Climate Groups." Read about all three.

Continue on to the Got It? section to examine the climates of places you will choose.

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