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C o m p a s s

 

In order to know which way the wind is blowing, you'll need a compass. You might like to make your own.

You'll need these materials:
A flat area where the sun shines directly (no shade)
A straight stick or dowel, about 18 inches long
Four heavy rocks (about the size of golf balls)
A few smaller stones for marking

Locate a flat sunny space near your weather station. Begin by digging a hole about six inches deep. Bury the base of the stick. The stick should now be standing up to a height of twelve inches.

The first thing you'll need to do is locate "North." Before school in the morning, place a small marking stone at the end of the shadow cast by the stick. After school, later in the afternoon, the shadow should be about the same length as it was in the morning, but in a different direction. Place a marking stone at the end of the afternoon shadow. Position your right foot on the morning stone and your left foot on the afternoon stone. Your body now faces south. Another way to think of this is that the two shadows meet at the stick to form an "arrow" pointing south.

Once you have located "south," place one of the four heavy stones on the ground, about twelve inches in front of the stick. Position a second stone in the "north" position by tracing a straight line opposite away from south. Position "east" and "west" carefully opposite from each other. Be sure that they are equally distant from "north" and "south." You can use your compass to find wind direction and other weather data.

 
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