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(Alissa Winters/How Clouds Work/March 24, 2017)

I. TOPIC – Cloud Formation and Precipitation


II. OBJECTIVES
1. Given demonstration, small group instruction, and lab report, TSWBAT write two
detailed and accurate sentences about how clouds are formed.
2. Given demonstration, small group instruction, and lab report, TSWBAT write two
detailed and accurate sentences about how clouds produce rain.
III. STANDARDS
PA Academic Standards for Science and Technology 3.1.4.C – Illustrate patterns that
regularly occur and reoccur in nature.
 Identify observable patterns
 Use knowledge of natural patterns to predict next occurrences
PA Academic Standards for Science and Technology 3.5.4.C – Know basic weather
elements.
 Identify cloud types
IV. TEACHING PROCEDURES
Anticipatory Set (1 minute)
1. Teacher will come in wearing a lab coat and tell students that now that they
know all about the different types of clouds, it’s time to figure out how clouds
work: how are they formed and how they produce rain.
2. Ask if the students are up for this investigation.
Development 1 (26 minutes)
1. Explain to the students that today we will be completing two different
labs/demonstrations. Go over lab procedures:
a. Do not touch objects at the lab unless instructed by the teacher.
b. Listen as the teacher or classmate talks, and do not talk while others are
talking.
c. Follow instructions given by teacher.
d. Do not write or draw on lab report until instructed by the teacher.
e. Participate and have fun! 
2. Show students example of a lab report and explain that they will be filling out a
lab report for each demonstration. They will be told what to write and draw. Pass
out lab reports to each student and tell them to take a pencil with them to the lab.
3. Split class in half (8 students with Miss Reem, 7 students with Miss Winters).
Each teacher will take her group of students to her specified lab station to
complete the following labs. Labs will be 12 minutes each, with a 2 minute switch
a. Cloud in a Jar (how clouds are formed)
i. Ask students if they have any idea how clouds are formed.
Explain how clouds are formed:
a. The air naturally contains a gas called water vapor
b. Water vapor condenses when warm air rises, expands,
and cools. It condenses into water droplets that are attached
to dust or pollen in the air.
c. When billions of these water droplets come together, a
cloud is formed.
ii. Have students watch (and assist with) demonstration:
a. Pour hot water into a jar. Swirl it around to warm up the
sides of the jar.
b. Turn the lid of the jar upside down and place it on the
top of the jar. Place several ice cubes onto the lid and allow
it to rest on top of the jar for about 20 seconds.
c. Remove the lid, quickly spray a bit of hairspray into the
jar, and then replace the lid with the ice still on top. The
cloud should form at this point.
d. When you see a good amount of condensation form,
remove the lid and watch the cloud escape into the air.
iii. Have students explain why this cloud was formed, using what
we talked about before the demonstration.
a. The warm water made some water vapor in the jar, and
the ice on top caused the warm air to condense as it rose to
the top. The water attached to the particles of the hairspray,
forming the cloud.
iv. Work with students to fill out the lab report for “Cloud in a Jar”
a. See guided practice below.
Note: If this experiment doesn’t work, here is a video of a similar experiment:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=11&v=msSVQ903T8k
b. Shaving Cream Rain (how clouds produce rain)
i. Explain how clouds produce rain:
a. Students learned (or will learn) that clouds are formed
from water condensation.
b. Rain or snowfall occurs when the condensation is great
(heavy) enough for the water or ice particles to no longer
stay aloft in the air.
i. This can happen through water droplets colliding
and combining with other water droplets or through
water condensing directly into the droplet.
c. The droplets will continue to fall as long as the
conditions to make the clouds and let the water droplets get
heavy enough to fall.
ii. Have students watch (and assist with) demonstration:
a. Fill mason jar to the top with water.
b. Put shaving cream on top of the water.
c. Drop food coloring on top of the shaving cream and
watch as it “falls” into the water like rain.
iii. Have students explain how this demonstration represented how
clouds form rain and why rain falls, using what we talked about
before the demonstration.
a. The food coloring was heavier than the shaving cream,
so the cloud couldn’t hold it up anymore.
iv. Work with students to fill out the lab report for “Shaving Cream
Rain”
a. See guided practice below.
Guided Practice 1 (time included with development above)
1. Students will fill out their lab report for each of the labs with teacher assistance.
a. Cloud in a Jar
i. Students will write two sentences about how clouds are formed.
ii. Students will check whether or not the demonstration accurately
represented what they learned about how clouds are formed.
iii. Students will draw a picture of the demonstration.
b. Shaving Cream Rain
i. Students will write two sentences about how clouds produce rain
and why it falls to the ground.
ii. Students will check whether or not the demonstration accurately
represented what they learned about how clouds produce rain and
why it falls to the ground.
iii. Students will draw a picture of the demonstration.
Closure (3 minutes)
1. Teacher will ask students to explain different parts of their lab report to review
the information covered in the demonstrations.
2. Teacher will thank students for being such good participants in the
investigation to see how clouds are formed and how they produce rain.
V. MATERIALS
- Lab coat
- Teacher example of lab report, completed
- Student lab reports (15) – see attached
- Pencils
- 2 large jars with a lids
- 2/3 cup hot water
- Ice
- Hairspray
- 2 small mason jars
- Water
- Shaving cream
- Food coloring
VI. ADAPTATIONS/PLAN MODIFICATIONS
1. To accommodate for our students with IEPs, teacher will sit next to or close to the
student while filling out the lab report, as to be sure that the student is staying on track
and getting the correct information down. She will also ask questions to the group
throughout the demonstration, being sure to ask the students with IEPs to check for
understanding.
2. If we don’t have enough time, students can skip the drawing in their lab report or
complete it later.
3. If we have extra time, students can discuss in groups what kind of cloud they learned
about yesterday that produces rain. They can also discuss how the formation of clouds
relates to the water cycle, led by the teacher.
VII. EVALUATION
Formative
1. Questions throughout and following demonstration to check for understanding
2. Lab report
3. Student share of lab reports following lesson.
Summative
1. Lab report
VIII. REFLECTION
1. Write an assessment of the students’ performance and mastery in terms of each stated
objective. List each objective’s evaluation separately.
2. Write a self-evaluation including explanation for success or lack of it. Discuss: What
changes might have produced better results and could be used in subsequent lessons.
3. Explain what specific changes were implemented from professor and teacher
suggestions and the results (If suggestions were not taken, explain your rationale).
Name:

“Cloud in a Jar” Lab Report


How are clouds formed?

Did this demonstration show what we learned today


about how clouds are formed?

Yes No

Draw a picture of the demonstration.


Name:

“Shaving Cream Rain” Lab Report


How do clouds produce rain and why does rain fall?

Did this demonstration show what we learned today


about how clouds produce rain and why rain falls?

Yes No

Draw a picture of the demonstration.