Weather

Where can I find information about weather?

Weather pics by MhayesLITT on Flickr.

Entry last updated: 23/02/18

Introduction

Weather describes the condition of the air at a particular time and place. It is made up of different things such as, wind direction, wind force, precipitation, temperature, sunshine, visibility and cloud. Weather is a big part of our lives as it affects many things we do, from the clothes we wear and how we travel, to the food we eat and where we live. This entry gives you a list of words, general websites, New Zealand websites and books about weather.

Weather words

Here are some words you may come across when learning about weather. You will find more weather related words in the websites provided in this entry.

Clouds: A collection of tiny water droplets or ice crystals that float in the sky.

High Pressure System: A mass of cool, dry air that usually brings fine weather and light winds.

Lightning: A large, hot spark of electricity produced by thunderstorms.

Low Pressure System: A mass of warm, moist air that usually brings stormy weather with strong winds.

Rain: Water droplets that fall from the clouds.

Snow: White ice crystals that fall from the clouds when the temperature is low.

Sunshine: Heat and light produced by the sun.

Temperature: A measurement of how hot or cold the air is.

Thunder: The sound that comes after a flash of lightning.

Tornado: A type of storm where strong rotating winds form a column which reaches from a cloud down to the ground.

Wind: The movement of air caused by the uneven heating of the earth's surface by the sun.

General websites

Did you know, about 2,000 thunderstorms rain down on Earth every minute? You can find other facts similar to this, on the following websites.

SciJinks

This website made by NASA and NOAA has great information about weather, satellite meteorology and earth science.

There are two ways to search this site:

  1. Type your keyword (eg meteorology) into the search bar at the top of the page.
  2. Use the tabs on the left hand side of the page (eg Topics) to browse through the information on the site.
Tips: We like sites like this because they’re reliable. You can tell because of their web address – they have either .govt or .ac, meaning they are from government or educational organisations. They’re also New Zealand sites, so relevant for us.

Britannica School

This is one of the EPIC resources. EPIC is a collection of reliable databases that have some really good information on all sorts of topics including weather.

  1. Login using your school password (or ask a librarian on AnyQuestions).
  2. Choose the primary level (you can always change the level later, if you need to).
  3. Type the keyword 'weather' into the search bar.
Tips: Search words, or keywords, are the most important words in our question. Usually it’s better to leave out small words like ‘the’, ‘a’ and ‘of’ and just choose the main ones, e g [weather]. We can always change our keywords or add more if we need to.

NASA

NASA is an overseas government organisation that is famous for space exploration. This website is made by the Earth Science Communications Team at NASA and has useful information about weather.

  • Type the keyword 'weather' into the search bar at the top of the page.
  • This will bring up a range of results for you to browse through, including an article on Space weather and Extreme weather.

Don't forgot to check out the videos related to weather as well!

Weather Wiz Kids

This website has been designed for children to help them learn about weather. It includes information on a range of topics related to weather, natural disasters and experiments.

There are two ways to search this site:

  • Select the weather tab at the top of the page and choose from the topics that come up in the drop down menu.
  • Type a keyword into the search bar eg rain.
Tips: Websites that have .com or .co in the address can have good information, but you need to assess how reliable it is. Check the About us link on the website, if you can find one. That can tell you what the company’s mission and values are.

New Zealand websites

The weather in New Zealand can be rather unpredictable. It could be wet and windy one minute, and warm and sunny the next. Below are some useful New Zealand websites that give you information about weather in New Zealand.

Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

Te Ara is an excellent starting point for all questions about New Zealand Aotearoa. If we scroll down to the bottom of the page we can see that the website belongs to the Ministry for Culture & Heritage, so the information is well-researched and reliable.

Type the keyword 'weather' into the search bar at the top of the page. This will bring up a range of results to do with weather in New Zealand such as Weather, Weather forecasting and Origins of the weather.

Tips: If you would like to find images or videos about weather, click on the Images & media filter on the left had side of the page.

MetService

This website has the latest New Zealand weather forecasts and provides information about tides, snow reports, radar maps and New Zealand weather maps.

Choose the name of a city eg Auckland or Wellington on the map. This will take you to a page that provides detailed information about the weather, temperature, wind speed etc. in that area.

Tips: Some websites have advertisements (or ads) which ask us to buy something or tell us to ‘click here’. It’s best to ignore these ads and focus on the information we’re looking for.

NIWA

NIWA (National Institution of Water and Atmospheric Research) is a research institution that conducts research across a broad range of areas in the environmental sciences.

To check the weather forecast in New Zealand,

Along with information about the temperature, rainfall, wind speed etc in that area, this page also includes information about FitzRoy, the 18 tonne brain behind NIWAWeather's forecasts. You may find the Weather Q&A section at the bottom of the page useful too!

To find information about weather, including links to useful resources,

This page includes information about a range of topics related to weather such as Climate and weather, Clouds and Storms and cyclones.

Books

There have been many books written about the weather - check out your local public or school library to see what they have. Some suggestions are:

SCIS no: 1857311

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