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Building Blocks of Science® 3D: Weather and Sky (©2019) Unit Kit

(in stock)


Grade K. In 5 lessons spanning 20 class sessions, Weather and Sky introduces young students to weather and the sky through direct observations. Building Blocks of Science® 3D lessons are structured in 30-minute class sessions, making it easy to fit science into your day. The Weather and Sky Unit Kit includes a teacher's guide (item #513842), a license for teacher and students to access online digital resources, and enough supplies and apparatus to teach the unit to a class of up to 24 students. All materials are reusable.

Along with hands-on learning, this Building Blocks of Science® 3D unit also provides digital resources to enhance the classroom experience. These components offer an additional method of delivering content, particularly for classrooms with consistent access to computers or tablets. Digital components include digital teacher's guide, simulations, digital literacy reader, interactive whiteboard activities, interactive student investigation sheets, and assessment. All digital resources for Building Blocks of Science® 3D are accessible at CarolinaScienceOnline.com.

Unit Summary
Students begin by drawing upon previous knowledge to document what they know about weather and what they can observe in the daytime and nighttime skies. Students then are introduced to four main weather conditions—temperature, cloud cover, precipitation, and wind—and how to observe and collect data about these conditions. Dangerous weather is explored, and student pairs use a model to explore the conditions that promote flooding. In groups, students observe and manipulate a tornado model, practice a tornado drill, and discuss how to prepare for and stay safe during dangerous weather.

Students learn about temperature and the Sun as Earth's main source of light and heat. Students observe how the Sun affects the temperature of different materials including sand, soil, rocks, and water. They apply their findings from this investigation to a design challenge in the last lesson. Students are introduced to the engineering design process and use this process to design and build a structure to block the Sun's rays and lessen its warming effect on a cup of sand. Finally, students compare their beginning knowledge about weather and the sky to what they know at the end of the unit, then apply that knowledge to complete a summative assessment.

Next Generation Science Standards*
The Building Blocks of Science® 3D unit Weather and Sky (©2019) integrates process skills as defined by the Next Generation Science Standards.

Performance Expectations

  • K-ESS2-1: Use and share observations of local weather conditions to describe patterns over time.
  • K-ESS3-2: Ask questions to obtain information about the purpose of weather forecasting to prepare for, and respond to, severe weather.
  • K-PS3-1: Make observations to determine the effect of sunlight on Earth's surface.
  • K-PS3-2: Use tools and materials provided to design and build a structure that will reduce the warming effect of sunlight on Earth's surface.
  • K-2-ETS1-1: Ask questions, make observations, and gather information about a situation people want to change to define a simple problem that can be solved through the development of a new or improved object or tool.
  • K-2-ETS1-2: Develop a simple sketch, drawing, or physical model to illustrate how the shape of an object helps it function as needed to solve a given problem.

    Disciplinary Core Ideas

    • ESS2.D: Weather and Climate
    • ESS3.B: Natural Hazards
    • PS3.B: Conservation of Energy and Energy Transfer
    • ETS1.A: Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems
    • ETS1.B: Developing Possible Solutions

    Crosscutting Concepts

    • Patterns
    • Cause and Effect
    • Scale, Proportion, and Quantity

    Common Core State Standards
    Language Arts

    • L.K.5: Vocabulary Acquisition and Use
    • RI.K.3: Key Ideas and Details
    • SL.K.1: Comprehension and Collaboration
    • SL.K.5: Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas
    • W.K.8: Research to Build and Present Knowledge


    • K.G.A.1: Identify and describe shapes.
    • K.G.A.2: Identify and describe shapes.
    • K.MD.B.3: Classify objects and count the number of objects in each category.

    Lesson Summaries
    Lesson 1

    Lesson 1 begins with a pre-unit assessment in which students share their ideas about weather. Then students become familiar with recording observations of the sky and weather during different times of day. As a class, students predict the weather conditions and the objects that are present in the daytime sky. Students then go outside to observe the daytime sky and record their observations to share with their classmates. Students predict the objects and weather conditions that are present in the nighttime sky and record their ideas on a class chart. In a Take-Home Science Activity, students record observations of the nighttime sky. The next day, students share what they observed with their classmates, and the class constructs a Venn diagram as students discuss patterns in daytime and nighttime skies. In the next lesson, students will begin to observe and record data on daily weather conditions.
    Lesson 2
    In this lesson, students learn about the four main weather features that they will investigate throughout this unit: temperature, wind, precipitation, and cloud cover. The lesson begins with a pre-assessment to find out what students already know about words to describe the weather. Students discuss how they plan their daily activities and choose clothing based on the weather for the day. Students are then introduced to the weather pocket chart and weather cards that they will use to make their daily observations. The four weather features are introduced and discussed one at a time so students can become familiar with the features and how to record their observations.
    Lesson 3
    In this lesson, students analyze the weather data they collected to look for patterns and connections among weather features. Students are also introduced to some dangerous weather conditions, such as floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, thunderstorms, and lightning. Students create a flood model to discuss the connection between flash flooding and soil absorption, and they create a tornado model to observe the motion of air during this dangerous weather condition. In addition, students practice a tornado drill and discuss ways to prepare for and stay safe during dangerous weather. In the next lesson, students will investigate temperature as they learn more about the Sun as the main source of Earth's heat and light.
    Lesson 4
    In this lesson, students learn more about temperature and how to measure it. Students observe changes in a thermometer's appearance as the temperature increases or decreases. Students then plan an investigation to explore the effect of sunlight on different types of materials that can be found on Earth's surface.
    Lesson 5
    In this final lesson, students practice engineering skills as they design and construct a structure to prevent their sand from being warmed by the Sun. Students test their structures and define any problems with their designs. They analyze the results of their tests to determine how their design could be improved. As a post-unit assessment, students revisit the class chart "Our Ideas About Weather" to evaluate what they have learned throughout the unit. The summative assessment requires students to apply concepts from every lesson to answer a series of questions.

    *Next Generation Science Standards® is a registered trademark of WestEd. Neither WestEd nor the lead states and partners that developed the Next Generation Science Standards were involved in the production of this product, and do not endorse it.


What’s Included:
  • 1 Teacher's Guide
  • 1 Unit Technology Pack (subscription to CarolinaScienceOnline.com to access digital teacher's guide, digital instructional resources, and digital big book)
  • Weather and Sky Big Book
  • 3 Bag, Plastic, Resealable, 9 x 12"
  • 1 Clamp Lamp, with Reflector (without bulb)
  • 25 Cup, Plastic, Squat, 9 oz
  • 30 Cup, Plastic, 2-1/2 oz, with Lid
  • 2 Lightbulb, 72-W Eco, Soft White
  • 12 Pail, Plastic, White, 1 qt
  • 16 Pipet, Graduated, 3 mL
  • 15 Sponge, Square, Blue
  • 1 Thermometer, Demonstration
  • 1 Thermometer, Fahrenheit, 9"
  • 12 Tray, Plastic, Clear
  • 8 Tube™, Tornado
  • 1 Sand, Marine, 5 lb
  • 2 Soil, 1 L
  • 1 Gravel, Aquarium, 5 lb
  • 1 Weather Flip Chart
  • 1 Classroom Pocket Chart
Return Policy:

If for any reason you are not satisfied with this item, it is eligible for a return, exchange, refund, or credit up to 180 days from date of purchase. Restrictions may apply. Returns & Exchanges Policy.