Lesson plan

Eyeing the Effects of Weather

What are the effects of weather events? In this integrated science and language arts lesson, students will explore causes and multiple effect in the context of reading and learning about various weather events and natural disasters.
Need extra help for EL students? Try the Cause and Effect Structure pre-lesson.
EL Adjustments
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Need extra help for EL students? Try the Cause and Effect Structure pre-lesson.
  • Students will be able to identify multiple effects that match corresponding causes using evidence from a text.
  • Students will be able to explain relationships between weather events and corresponding effects.
The adjustment to the whole group lesson is a modification to differentiate for children who are English learners.
EL adjustments
(5 minutes)
  • Invite students to describe a detail related to a weather event that happens in their region.
  • Ask them to identify the effects. (Ex: When it rains, students need to wear raincoats or bring an umbrella. People need to drive slower because it's harder to see through the windshield.)
  • Tell the students that sometimes there is not just one effect from a single cause. Tell the students that they will be reading and finding multiple effects that come from a single cause.
(10 minutes)
  • Briefly review the terms cause and effect, reminding students that a cause is the reason something happens and the effect is the outcome or what happens as a result of the cause.
  • Explain that sometimes there is not only one effect for a particular cause. There can be multiple effects.
  • Tell the students that certain weather events can cause four main effects: effects on people, effects on future weather, effects on land, and effects on property.
  • Using the Lightning Excerpt (or another text of choice), demonstrate the process of creating a flowchart that represents the ideas of the effects of lightning.
(15 minutes)
  • Tell the students that they will now participate in locating the effects of flash floods.
  • Display the excerpt on flash floods on an interactive whiteboard or written on chart paper. (If desired, you could also give out individual copies to students in addition to displaying the text at the front of the classroom.)
  • Distribute individual whiteboards and whiteboard markers.
  • Tell the students that they will use the text to create a chart on their individual whiteboards that represents the effects that are caused by flash floods.
  • Invite students to share one of the four different effects (effects on people, future weather, land, and property). Guide students through the process and underline evidence from the text as they share their thinking.
  • Ask students to create a flowchart (similar to the one that you created during teacher modeling) that represents the ideas found in the text.
  • Circulate around the room to assist students as needed.
(15 minutes)
  • Divide students into pairs or small groups.
  • Utilizing the supplemental list of weather events, either assign each group a topic or allow students to choose a topic from the list of weather events so that the topics are jigsawed. (Each group should be responsible for a different topic.)
  • Distribute selected texts to individual pairs or small groups.
  • Distribute the Weather Effects worksheet to each pair of students.
  • Tell the students to fill in the components of the worksheet to represent effects of their weather event that they found in the text.


  • Use two or more weather events to locate a similar effect, using a Venn diagram to represent the information on Comparing the Effects of Different Events worksheet.
  • Have students research the causes and effects related to climate change.


  • Provide a partially filled in flowchart for students to use.
  • Specify or highlight a section of the text for students to focus on.
  • If desired, have students create their flowchart using Google drawings, Piktochart, or another program.
  • Ask the students to represent the effects of their weather event by creating slides to represent their information.
(5 minutes)
  • Have students complete a quick write in which they explain the relationship between the effects of their weather event and the corresponding causes. Consider using the sentence starter: "Two effects of ____ are..."
(5 minutes)
  • Combine pairs or groups of students so that larger groups are formed.
  • Ask the students to teach their peers what they learned about various effects of their weather events.

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