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Speaking of News

Teaching News is Elementary


Program Content for October 24, 2014

Each week, this lesson will share some classroom activity ideas that use the newspaper or other NIE resources.  You are encouraged to modify this lesson to fit the needs of your students.  For example, some classrooms may be able to use this as a worksheet and others might need to ask and answer the questions in a class discussion. 

Please be sure to preview all NIE content before using it in your classroom to ensure it is appropriate for all of your students.

Materials you will need for this lesson: The Seattle Times e-Edition

Article: “Get Weather Ready with Take Winter By Storm: Heavy Rainstorms”

Page: A10

Date: Tuesday, October 21, 2014


Pre- Reading Discussion Questions: 


Look at the title and the images on page A10. What do you think it means to be “weather ready?” Have you ever experienced a flood or heavy rainstorm? What happened?




Read the following quotes and determine the meaning of the word based on how it’s used in the sentence:


Different types of wild Northwest winter weather require different precautions.


(things that are done to prevent possible harm or trouble from happening in the future)


 Whether it’s a torrential downpour or a prolonged rainfall buildup lasting several days, heavy rains affect people, homes and land differently based on the location.


(torrential: coming in a large, fast stream)


(prolonged: lasting longer than usual or expected : continuing for a long time)


Keep rain gear, water-repellent clothing and extra warm clothing handy at home and in your family’s vehicle to use in an emergency.



Journal Writing Prompts: 


“Turn around! Don’t drown! Never walk or drive through flooded roads or areas. You can’t always tell how deep the water might be, whether a road has been washed away or if there are hazards beneath the surface.”


Imagine you encounter a flooded road. What do you do? How can you tell how deep the water might be without stepping in it? What types of hazards might be beneath the surface? How can you uncover these without stepping in or touching the water?



Discussion Questions:


Review the excerpt and discuss the following questions:


Be prepared for a rainstorm by watching weather forecasts with your family. Be aware of potential heavy rains or rainfall buildup over multiple days. Keep rain gear, water-repellent clothing and extra warm clothing handy at home and in your family’s vehicle to use in an emergency.”


What are examples of rain gear, water repellent clothing and extra warm clothing? What do you already have at home that you could use in case of an emergency? What are examples of clothing which you would not want to wear in a rainstorm? How can you stay tuned to weather forecasts?


Small group discussion and activity:   

“If you live, work or go to school near rivers that are prone to flooding, locate several routes to higher ground. Have an emergency kit ready to grab and go in case of evacuation.


Be safe: Follow evacuation and other official directions during flood emergencies.”


Is your school near rivers that could flood? What are routes to higher ground you could take in the event of an emergency? What items should be in your emergency kit in case of an evacuation? Even if your school is not in an area prone to flooding, locate evacuation routes for other types of emergencies. Write them out and post them clearly in your classroom.


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