Weather for Kids - Chapter 6 - How To Become A Meteorologist
Welcome to Teaching Weather for Kids
Before going forward with Weather for Kids Chapter 6, here are the answers for the trivia questions in Chapter 5 - "Weather and Climate"
- Q: What are the five world-wide elements of climate?
A: The atmosphere, the hydrosphere, the cryosphere, the lithosphere and the biosphere.
- Q: What expression of climate are the original Köppen climate classifications based on?
A: The system was originally developed by Wladimir Köppen, who was a botanist as well as a climatologist. He based his climate classification system on the observation that certain types of plants grow in certain regions but not in others. In the decades since the Köppen climate classifications has come into use, we have a better understanding of how a saguaro cactus and a live oak tree have different climatic needs, and how climate change over time affects how plants grow and thrive
- Q: What can the study of paleoclimatology teach us about climate change today?
A: Through paleoclimatology, the study of climate before records were kept, we know that regional and planet wide climates change. These cycles are not entirely predictable, and it is inconclusive how much effect man-made factors have influenced climate change.
Chapter 6: How To Become A Meteorologist
In this section we will discuss:
How you can become an amateur meteorologist with a home weather station
A meteorologist is a scientist who studies weather and the atmosphere. They work for government agencies, private business, in education, consulting and research services, and for TV and radio stations. The public is most familiar with meteorologists who provide weather forecasting in media.
Most professional meteorologists will attain a four-year college degree in meteorology or a related science. The course of study will be heavy on math because modern weather forecasting depends upon compiling data from hundreds or thousands of observation sites then creating and analyzing computer models based on the data. If you plan on studying meteorology, it is best to start in high school. If your school offers calculus, computer programming and physics courses, you can start college ahead of the game.
Another option to receive the latest “Hands On” meteorological training is through military service. Both the US Navy and Air Force require up to date and accurate local weather information to accomplish their missions. Both services use enlisted specialists to collect and interpret both locally collected weather data as well as satellite data. An enlisted weather specialist will be required to complete Enlisted Basic Military Training (“Boot Camp”) for their service, and then attend a specialized technical school. The Navy's Aerographer's Mate (AG) Class A Technical School and Air Force Weather Specialist technical training is held at Keesler AFB, Mississippi. Your local Military recruiter can provide more detailed career information.
Many of the instruments that a professional meteorologist uses are just like the ones that come with a home weather station. In fact, many weather hobbyists are able to connect their weather stations to a central data collection point so that weather scientists can use the data collected by amateurs for weather modeling and forecasting.
- Why is studying math so important for meteorologists?
- What are two military enlisted career specialties that work with weather and gathering meteorological data?
(You'll get the answer in Weather for Kids Chapter 6 - to be published next week)