Appendix F: Extension Activity
Ask students if they ever heard the story of the "Three Little Pigs." Have students briefly retell the story. Have students discuss the problems that the three little pigs faced. Ask students what they think the first two pigs could have done differently to prevent the destruction of their homes. Tell students that they will explore an activity where they simulate severe weather impacting the three types of homes built by the three little pigs.
Before the activity, construct three model homes: a simple card house will represent the house made of straw; a house constructed from toothpicks and glue will represent the house made of sticks; and a house made of toy interlocking blocks (like Lego) will represent the house made of brick.
Students should be challenged to think of ways the class can simulate severe weather to test the strength of the structures. Possibilities include turning on a fan to simulate wind, tossing centimeter cubes to simulate hail, and shaking the desk to simulate an earthquake.
Before the activity begins, students should make predictions about which home will be able to withstand each test and why. These predictions can later be graphed and compared to the actual test results.
Interactive Activity 4: Impacts of Severe Weather
Hang a copy of the Beaufort Scale from the "Did You Know?" section near your class calendar. Keep track of the wind force (Beaufort Scale force 1-10) for a month. (Recess would be a good time to note the wind’s force each day, so assign a meteorologist to take the Beaufort Scale outside for reference.) The class can track the wind force with one chart near the calendar or each child can keep track in a journal. Students can choose how they will track the wind force -- with simple tally marks (beside force 1-10) or with a more complex graph.
Use Independent Studies
Graphing Maryland Weather (Engineering Portfolio page 10)
For students who would are interested in graphing alternative data, the first step is to choose the correct type of graph to use for the data they would like to display.
Refer students to the website http://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/help/user_guide/graph/whentouse.asp
Then, students can use an interactive applet to graph their data, such as Create a Graph .