Making and using a rain gauge
Lesson length: 1 session
Lesson from Grandma Bird series
- Wider learning opportunities: Science: weather and seasons
Grandma Bird lives on an island surrounded by sea. Areas near the ocean tend to receive more rain on average than inland areas because the wind picks up moisture over the water and dries out the further inland it travels. Measuring rainfall is essential for farmers, as it helps them to make predictions that help with the cultivation of crops. It also helps us predict areas that will be prone to drought. This lesson provides an introduction to measuring rainfall.
- View the Met Office instructions for making a rain gauge (see link below)
- Prepare the materials to make the rain gauge
Make a rain gauge
Explain to the children that they are going to work in small groups to create their rain gauges to measure rainfall. Some prompts to support their designs are:
- What would be a good material to choose? (e.g., waterproof, durable, will stand up without being blown over)
- How big will it need to be?
- How will you know how much rain has fallen?
Alternatively, you may want to make a rain gauge following the Met Office instructions in the video link provided below.
Measure and record the rainfall over a period of time.
Review your rain measuring records.
Consider why it might be useful to measure rainfall?some of the reasons scientists measure rainfall are to anticipate which areas could be affected by drought or to prevent environmental disasters
precipitation, rain gauge
Met Office Instructions for making a rain gauge
Sarah Grintzevitch explains how to make your own rain gauge using objects from around the house.
How the Met Office measures rain
Background information for teachers rather than for direct use in the KS1 classroom.