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The Poetry of Science

The Language of Science

Science and Children—November/December 2021 (Volume 59, Issue 2)

By Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong

Take 5!

  1. Before sharing this poem, challenge students to listen for particular weather words. Then read the poem aloud and make a list of all the words they can identify (e.g., warm, sunny, low pressure, rain, atmospheric, high pressure, stormy, latitudinal position, location, climatic).
  2. Break the students into two groups—one to join in on the low pressure lines (Low pressure grumbles in with rain / an atmospheric / pout) and another to read the high pressure lines (High pressure smiles and saves the day, / sweeps the stormy / out) while you read the rest of the poem aloud.
  3. Check the weather forecast in your area on (Online Resources). Use this opportunity to discuss emergency preparedness and review emergency procedures for school or home together.
  4. Use this poem to talk about the differences between climate and weather.  Work together to make a simple chart listing attributes and examples of each. Consult nonfiction books like Weather by Seymour Simon (see Resources) or the DK Eyewitness Book: Weather by Brian Cosgrove (see Resources).
  5. Link this poem with another about meteorology, “Weather Map” also by Joan Bransfield Graham (see Online Resources), and with poem selections from Seed Sower, Hat Thrower: Poems about Weather by Laura Purdie Salas (see Resources) and Weather Report by Jane Yolen (see Resources).
Climate Versus Weather

Climate Versus Weather

by Joan Bransfield Graham

Climate’s your personality,
weather is
your mood—
a warm and sunny outlook,
with occasional

Low pressure grumbles in with rain,
an atmospheric
High pressure smiles and saves the day,
sweeps the stormy

Where are you living on this globe—
your latitudinal
Location has a lot to do
with your climatic

Poem © 2014 Joan Bransfield Graham from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science by Sylvia Vardell and Janet S. Wong © 2014 Pomelo Books; illustration by Frank Ramspott from The Poetry of Science: The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science for Kids © 2015 Pomelo Books.   


Graham, J.B. 2014. “Climate Versus Weather” in The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science, eds. S. Vardell and J. Wong, 245. Princeton, NJ: Pomelo Books.


Cosgrove, B. 2016. DK Eyewitness book: Weather. New York: DK Books.

Salas, L. P. 2008. Seed sower, hat thrower: Poems about weather. Minneapolis, MN: Capstone Press.

Simon, S. 2006. Weather. New York: HarperCollins.

Yolen, J. 1993. Weather report. Honesdale, PA: Boyds Mills & Kane/Wordsong.

Online Resources

Joan Bransfield Graham website

“Weather Map” by Joan Bransfield Graham

Instructional Materials Interdisciplinary Literacy Early Childhood

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