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Climate Prediction Center
http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/

National Weather Service, NOAA

This interactive National Weather Service interactive visualization includes outlook maps for 6-10 day, 8-14 day, 1 month, and 3 month temperature and precipitation patterns in the US, as well as a hazards outlook and drought information.

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Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Climate is determined by the long-term pattern of temperature and precipitation averages and extremes at a location. Climate descriptions can refer to areas that are local, regional, or global in extent. Climate can be described for different time intervals, such as decades, years, seasons, months, or specific dates of the year.
About Teaching Principle 4
Other materials addressing 4a
Climate is not the same thing as weather. Weather is the minute-by-minute variable condition of the atmosphere on a local scale. Climate is a conceptual description of an area’s average weather conditions and the extent to which those conditions vary over long time intervals.
About Teaching Principle 4
Other materials addressing 4b
Observations, experiments, and theory are used to construct and refine computer models that represent the climate system and make predictions about its future behavior. Results from these models lead to better understanding of the linkages between the atmosphere-ocean system and climate conditions and inspire more observations and experiments. Over time, this iterative process will result in more reliable projections of future climate conditions.
About Teaching Principle 5
Other materials addressing 5c
Our understanding of climate differs in important ways from our understanding of weather. Climate scientists’ ability to predict climate patterns months, years, or decades into the future is constrained by different limitations than those faced by meteorologists in forecasting weather days to weeks into the future.
About Teaching Principle 5
Other materials addressing 5d

Benchmarks for Science Literacy
Learn more about the Benchmarks

Scientific investigations usually involve the collection of relevant data, the use of logical reasoning, and the application of imagination in devising hypotheses and explanations to make sense of the collected data.
Explore the map of concepts related to this benchmark
The earth has a variety of climates, defined by average temperature, precipitation, humidity, air pressure, and wind, over time in a particular place.
Explore the map of concepts related to this benchmark

Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

  • Educators will have to make the connection between weather patterns and climate change. The visualizations are for current weather trends. This makes it easy to relate these maps to current news reports.
  • If educators are teaching a unit on weather and climate, they could use this site to track changes and predictions in weather over the time of the unit.

About the Science

  • Comprehensive collection of current weather and long-term climate data.
  • NOAA/National Weather Service website includes additional webpages describing how these maps are produced.
  • Comments from expert scientist: The strengths are the detail and breadth of information and data. I was able to look at numerous metrics of climate and weather in the present, predictions for the future, and summaries, reports, and raw data from the past. Links provided to external sources of information (NIDIS, etc.) are very helpful and round out the content of the site itself.

About the Pedagogy

  • This collection of interactive visualizations is a great way to compare current weather trends to historic patterns.
  • The maps themselves should be easy for most high school students to understand; younger students will need guidance.
  • Links to pages that describe how to read the maps are provided.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • The various maps in this collection can be viewed online and opened and saved as image files on web browsers. The outlook maps can be viewed as lines-only or color-filled.
  • The graphic clarity could be improved.

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