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Grade Level: 3-6

Time: 2 periods


Latitude and Longitude and hurricanes


Students will track a simulated hurricane's path.


  • Hurricane tracking chart
  • Hurricane reports
  • Hurricane Hugo laserdisc


  • Use latitude and longitude to track a hurricane
  • Discuss patterns in hurricane movement
  • Discuss the effects of a hurricane on human and environmental systems


  1. Introduce the topic: Discuss what students know about hurricanes. Review latitude and longitude.
  2. Strategies:
    1. Pass out hurricane tracking charts and identify the latitude and longitude lines on the map.
    2. Warn students that a hurricane is forming in the Caribbean Sea. Ask students to select a name for their hurricane.
    3. Read radio reports of hurricane location, wind speed, and water swell. Provide these to students to read also. It may help to work in pairs.
    4. Track the hurricane all the way through its path and have students connect the dots.
    5. Discuss where the most damage may have occurred and why.
    6. Discuss the movement of the hurricane and the strength of the winds. Compare to other hurricanes.
    7. Show Hurricane Hugo laser disc to provide images of that hurricane's damage.
  3. Culminating Activity: Ask the students to write a journal entry of a paragraph about the strength and path of hurricanes and about what kinds of damage one can cause to humans and to the environment.


Students will complete the hurricane tracking chart, participate in the discussions, and complete the writing assignment.


  • The World in Spatial Terms (Latitude and longitude and map locations)
  • Places and Regions (hurricanes affect certain regions)
  • Physical Systems (hurricanes affect Florida)
  • Environment and Society (hurricanes affect the people of Florida)
  • The Uses of Geography (use what we know about hurricanes to plan for future hurricanes)

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