Specifically, your annotated weather presentation should address the following critical elements:
I. Basic Elements of the Atmosphere
a) Analyze how and why the composition and structure of the atmosphere changes over time. Be sure to explain the role of permanent and
variable gases in this process.
b) Illustrate how gains and losses in atmospheric energy contribute to the Earth’s long-term energy balance. For example, how do seasonal changes
and solar radiation affect atmospheric energy? Provide examples to support your answer.
c) Break down how atmospheric energy transfers contribute to weather and climate change, highlighting interrelationships between atmospheric
processes and providing examples to illustrate your points. For example, what is the role of energy relative to temperature, changes in
atmospheric pressure, and moisture in the lower atmosphere?
d) Explain some of the principal ways human beings can contribute to changes in the composition and evolution of the Earth’s atmosphere. Give
concrete examples to support your answer.
a) Use geoscience concepts to analyze the forces involved in creating surface and upper air winds, including the relationship between wind and
pressure systems. In other words, how and why does wind occur?
b) Analyze the general circulation of the atmosphere, including all major circulation cells and resulting wind systems. Use relevant geoscience
concepts to explain how and why these systems occur. You may want to consider how circulation cells and associated wind systems work
together in forming one continuous atmosphere.
c) Explain how energy and circulation patterns contribute to the formation of clouds, precipitation, and other types of weather using relevant
a) Describe the life cycle of the four major types of storms and the weather that develops from each.
b) Analyze the types of severe weather hazards associated with each storm type. In other words, what threats are present in each storm system
and why? Support your answer using relevant atmospheric concepts and examples.
c) What are the primary causes of death and destruction for each storm type? Explain how and why these occur, including the interrelationships
between humans and their environment. You may want to consider where destruction occurs relative to the storm body, path, or life cycle in
d) Discuss how people mitigate against the different types of severe weather, including the role of weather forecasting in that process. You may
want to address issues related to multiple storm threats or changing climate scenarios in your discussion.
IV. Weather Analysis: For this section, choose one of the three locations marked on the charts and maps provided to create a forecast of local weather. (Be sure to indicate which area you selected.) Specifically, you should:
a) Use the surface weather map provided to describe the state of the atmosphere for the area. What are the temperature, wind direction and speed, relative humidity, and pressure and recent pressure change for the location? You may also want to include information on additional weather conditions present on the map, such as overall pressure gradient, precipitation, or the life-cycle stage of any relevant storms.
b) Analyze the upper air charts provided to explain how winds in the upper atmosphere differ from those at the surface, detailing the role of the jet stream and polar front theory relative to the motion of any weather events. You may also want to include how polar front theory contributes to the motion of weather elements in your explanation.
c) Forecast how the state of the atmosphere for the selected location will change in the near future. Support your answer using relevant atmospheric concepts and evidence from the surface weather map and upper air charts provided. In other words, what weather changes will occur and why? What should students expect for the following day’s weather?
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