Tornadoes - What and Why?

Content

  • Statement of inquiry
    • Where would it not be a good idea to live in the USA?
  • Aims of this lesson
    • To gain knowledge of what tornadoes are and where they occur.
    • To practice the skills necessary to interpret maps and graphs.
Context

Context

Watch

Task 1

Watch the following video clip. What conditions are necessary for the formation of a tornado?

Watch

Task 2

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Stage 9

Cut out the nine images that represent the different stages of tornado development. Glue them into your exercise book in the correct order leaving enough space to write the correct statement from below by the image.

A visible cone or funnel drops out of the cloud.
When the warm, moist air meets cold dry air, it explodes upwards, puncturing the layer above. A thunder cloud may begin to build.
A tornado can last from several seconds to more than an hour and may travel tens of kilometres.
Intense or unseasonable heat.
A storm quickly develops - there may be rain, thunder and lightening.
The Fujita damage scale is used to estimate the wind speed from the damage caused.
Upwards movement of air becomes very rapid. Winds from different directions cause it to rotate.
The vortex of wind reaches the ground. They vary in size and shape and can be hundreds of metres wide.
As the ground temperature increases, moist air heats and starts to rise.
weather-tornado

Watch

Task 3

Cut out the following map out from the resource sheet, stick it into your exercise book and then answer these questions:

  1. List 8 countries that have an increased likelihood of experiencing tornadoes
  2. Describe the global distribution of areas with an increased likelihood of experiencing tornadoes
Regions of the world with increased likelihood of experiencing tornadoes
Regions of the world with increased likelihood of experiencing tornadoes
Watch

Task 4

Cut out the following map out from the resource sheet, stick it into your exercise book and then answer these questions:

  1. Describe the link between tornadoes and agricultural areas.
  2. What problems do you think may be caused by the link between tornadoes and agricultural areas.
World Tornadoes and Agricultural Areas
World Tornadoes and Agricultural Areas
Watch

Task 5

Cut out the following graph out from the resource sheet, stick it into your exercise book and then answer these questions, in full sentences:

  1. In which year was there the greatest number of tornado deaths? How many deaths were there that year?
  2. In which year was there the lowest number of tornado deaths? How many deaths were there that year?
  3. Are the number of deaths caused by tornadoes increasing or decreasing? Explain why you think that is.
US Tornado Deaths 1950 - 2008
Watch

Task 6

On to a base map, produce a map that shows the areas of the United States of America where there is a significant risk of death caused by a tornado. You should have three categories of area: High Risk, Medium Risk and Low Risk.

usa-outline-map

U.S. Reported Tornadoes and Average Number of Deaths Per Year
U.S. Reported Tornadoes and Average Number of Deaths Per Year