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"Lego Hurricanes"

Greg English
Oak Park Middle School

"I created this assignment for my students after seeing Bill Denney present a similar lesson on the Land Ordinance of 1785 during a Middle School Institute. I liked the idea so much that I went home and grabbed my grandson's Legos and began creating a hurricane lesson idea."

First: You will need to garage sale shop for old Legos. Buying them in the store is out of a teacher's price range. You will need 6-7 12"x12" Lego base boards and about 100 of five different color legos for each base. The best are the smaller, skinny blocks, in 1, 2, 3, and 4 dot blocks. Rough count for my hurricane is 33 white blocks, 22 red, 8 blue, 10 black, and 5 yellow. This varies due to the number of 1 dot blocks vs 2 dot, 3 dot, 4 dot and so on. I used white ones for regular clouds of feeder bands, red for my northeast quad, yellow for the eye wall, blue for the land fall, and black for the eye and directional arrow.

You should include a few extras due to not knowing what exactly each group will build. Place all Legos, one Lego base, and page one of directions in a gallon size zip lock bag.

Second: After teaching the parts of a hurricane, including the eye, eye wall, feeder rain bands, counterclockwise rotation, forward motion, landfall, storm surge, quadrants, and northeast quadrant, divide students into small four member groups.

Third: Explain that they are to create a model of a hurricane using the Lego blocks in their bag. Tell them that all information is located in the bag and that the group must come up with a way to represent the information requested.

Fourth: Pass out the bags and let the students work.

Fifth: Using the rubric document, interview each table and have each member explain at least two parts of their model. Students get one point for each part of the model they describe and explain. The group gets one point for each part correctly modeled. See rubric for guides I use. Create your own to make it fit your own style or grading patterns.

printable worksheets.doc
Louisiana Difference
louisiana101.com website copyright 2001 Greg English