The Topic: 
Tornadoes


Easier - Tornadoes are violent, whirling funnel-shaped windstorms that usually travel over land. When a tornado touches the ground, it can cause great destruction in its narrow path.
 
Harder - Tornadoes, often called twisters, are the most violent of thunderstorms. A tornado over a body of water is called a waterspout.
 
Tornadoes occur when a warm, humid air mass meets with a cool, dry air mass. This collision sometimes results in a powerful, swirling column of air. The tornado's swirling winds can exceed 300 mph. Tornadoes cause much damage by this sheer force of wind, but they also have a strong updraft that can lift and carry objects. Fortunately, most tornadoes are relatively weak; only a few are devastating.
 
 Storm Spotter's Guide: An Illustrated Guide to Identifying Severe Storms 
http://www.srh.noaa.gov/oun/skywarn/spotterguide.html
Learn all about thunderstorms, tornadoes and other severe weather.
 
Tornadoes - Going Around in Circles (the Why Files) 
http://whyfiles.news.wisc.edu/013tornado/index.html
This website includes information about what causes tornadoes, how they get their energy, a twister glossary, quiz, and more.
 
Tornado Project Online! 
http://www.tornadoproject.com/
This site provides gale-force amounts of information on tornadoes including tornado chasing, oddities, myths, safety, and accounts.
 
Tornadoes! 
http://www.txdirect.net/~msattler/tornado.htm
This page gives an in depth view into all aspects of tornadoes.
 Visit a few of the sites below, then pick and complete one of these tornado projects:
 
Prepare for a Tornado. Visit Twisters: Destruction From The Sky and Tornadoes - Going Around in Circles. Then create a procedure for your family to follow in the event that a tornado was in your area. Would that procedure need to be changed if you were in a different locale such as your school, in a car, or at the mall? Compare your ideas with those at Tornado Safety Tips Brochure. Now revise your safety procedures.
 
Create a Tornado in a Jar. Visit Tornado in a Bottle or Tornado in a Jar and then create your own tornado experiment. Write a journal account of the activity.
 
Write a Tornado Story. Create a short story that involves a tornado.
 
Research Tornado Occurrences. Using the information found at the sites below, create a map of the U.S. that indicates the ten states that have the most tornadoes. Has your community had a tornado? Visit a local library and see if you can find records and information about local tornadoes.
 
Complete a Tornadoes Webquest. Select or adapt from the procedures found one or more of these webquest project sites:
 
Websites For Kids By Kids
 Twisters: Destruction From The Sky (ThinkQuest Junior site) 
http://tqjunior.advanced.org/4232/
Here you will find photos, stories, ways to save your life, and weird facts about tornadoes.
 
Tornadoes 
http://www.germantown.k12.il.us/html/tornado.html
This school site contains tornado facts, pictures, charts, and links on the cause and effects of tornadoes.
 
More Twister Information
Introduction to Tornadoes from the Movie 'Twister' 
http://www.movies.warnerbros.com/twister/cmp/tornadointro.html
This site has good tornado information. Be sure to explore all the links.

Tornado and Storm Research Organisation

http://www.torro.org.uk/
Read tornado information from the United Kingdom, which has the highest frequency of reported tornadoes per unit area in the world.
 
Tornado Safety Tips Brochures 
http://www.fema.gov/library/tornadof.htm
When a tornado is coming, you have only a short amount of time to make life-or-death decisions. Advance planning and quick response are the keys to surviving a tornado.
 
Tornado Warning! 
http://www.discovery.com/area/science/tornado/tornado.html
Read current dispatches from tornado stormchasers, and hear about the art, science, and danger of twister-chasing.
 
Tornado 
http://www.indirect.com/www/storm5/tornadoindex.html
This website is devoted to tornado and storm chasing, storm spotting, storm chasers, severe weather research, weather photographs and storm safety.
 
Tornado Information Index from USA Today 
http://www.usatoday.com/weather/tornado/wtwist0.htm
Get the latest severe weather watches and warnings plus lots of tornado information.
 
Tornadoes-- Weatherpix
http://weatherpix.com
Site devoted to severe weather education and photography.
Similar and Related Websites:
2) Tornadoes http://ww2010.atmos.uiuc.edu/(Gh)/guides/mtr/svr/torn/home.rxml
3) Wall Clouds http://ww2010.atmos.uiuc.edu/(Gh)/wwhlpr/wall_cloud.rxml?hret=/guides/mtr/svr/torn/ho
me.rxml
 
Tornado Chasers Home Page--Kansas
http://www.tornadochaser.com/
Source for storm spotters on the subject of severe weather & tornadoes.
 
Turn! Turn! Turn! (Scientific American) 
http://www.sciam.com/explorations/052096explorations.html
Learn how scientists unravel the twisted ways of tornadoes.
 
What creates a tornado? 
http://www.pa.msu.edu/~sciencet/ask_st/081397.html
Brief article explains the environmental conditions that cause a tornado to happen.
 
What is a Tornado? at About.com 
http://kidscience.about.com/kidsteens/kidscience/library/weekly/aa051099.htm
A tornado is a powerful storm which is created when moist, warm air gets trapped beneath a stable layer of cold, dry air within layer of warm, dry air. Learn more at this site.
 
Websites for Teachers
Tornadoes (Grade 4) 
http://cecasun.utc.edu/~tpa/mcallister/students/su97SuSandiHeim.html
This lesson plan is about the formation of a tornado, their destructive nature, and related safety precautions.
 
Twister! Understanding and Surviving Tornadoes (Education World) 
http://www.education-world.com/a_lesson/lesson116.shtml
Here is a lesson planning article about the meteorological events that signal the possibility of a tornado and what safety measures you and your students can take to survive.
whirlwind
tornado
hurricane
wind shear
tornado warning
meteorologist
funnel-shape
twister
twister
rain
mesocyclone
hail
waterspout
typhoon
thunderstorm
damage path
tornado watch
wind
supercell
storm chaser
tornado alley
National Weather Service
front
Doppler radar
vortex
updraft
air mass
air pressure
rotation
landspout
towering cumulus
suction vortice
'tronada'
wall cloud
rain-free base
tornado alert
 
 
 
Created by Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, Updated by Nancy Smith, 10/01