How to Collect Weather Observations (PDF)
To collect the weather observations for cloud cover, wind direction and speed, weather conditions and air temperature the following equipment will be required:
*An anemometer is not crucial as observations can be taken visually using the Beaufort Scale.
Choose a safe location away from roads or car parks within your school site which you have permission to use when you will be taking observations. Try to choose a site which is not close to buildings or metalled surfaces and not in the shelter of hedges or walls. For the most reliable and accurate readings an open grass surface is recommended. Select the site before taking observations and ensure all readings are taken at the same site.
Collecting Weather Observations
It is recommended that the following table is printed or copied and used to record the weather observations in the field, before submitting the observations via WOW. Detailed instructions are provided below.
Weather Observation Variables
This is measured using the Okta scale where the proportion of cloud covering the sky in eighths is observed and the suitable value from the scale is recorded.
Wind Direction (compass required)
Orient yourself such that the wind is blowing directly towards you. Then holding a compass level rotate the scale so that 0° aligns with the North arrow and record the direction you are facing in degrees. Convert this direction from degrees to the nearest point on the 16-point compass scale.
Wind Speed (anemometer* and calculator required)
Recording in mph, km/h or m/s
Hold the anemometer at arm's length at approximately 1.5m above ground level. Take 3 readings separated by 30 seconds and calculate the mean wind speed from these three readings. If necessary, convert this wind speed into mph using the conversion 1mile = 1.609km and 1km = 1000m and record this final figure.
Recording using Beaufort Scale
Observe the effect of the current wind on local trees and buildings; record the suitable force from the Beaufort Scale.
Local Weather Summary
Observe the current weather conditions and record the code which best describes the weather:
Air Temperature (thermometer required)
Hold the thermometer (not at the bulb if an analogue thermometer is used) at arm's length at approximately 1.5m above the ground level. Ensure the thermometer is in the shade; use your shadow if there is no local shade. Record the stable temperature after 1 minute.