Windy ways – CREST SuperStar activity

This activity challenges you to measure wind speed and direction simply by blowing bubbles.

Wind iconWhat is wind and why is it important?

Wind is the movement of air in the atmosphere caused by differences in air temperature and pressure, as well as the Earth's spin. The wind is an important part of the weather system. It also helps plants to reproduce.

ACTIVITY – From sailing to drying our clothes, there are many ways we make use of the wind. How many can you think of?

Measuring the wind – how and why?

Wind can vary from a gentle breeze to a dangerous hurricane force. The strength of wind is often recorded using the Beaufort scale. Knowing the direction and strength of the wind helps scientists predict the weather – from a rainy day in Manchester to a potential hurricane in Central America.

See the Beaufort scale on the Met Office website

Create your own weather station

Measure wind, air pressure, rainfall and more with a homemade weather station. All you need is a few household items.

Build your own weather station with the OPAL DIY weather kit (PDF, 785KB)


Make your own wind vane

Have you spotted a wind vane on a roof or tower?

It's a simple way to tell which direction the wind is coming from.

Make your own wind vane – Met Office website


Find out what makes a good weather picture and learn to draw your own.

Suitable for Key Stage 1 Art and Design. 

Weather WebQuest – Natural History Museum site








Close-up of dandelion seeds

Using the wind to reproduce

Many plants use the wind to scatter their seeds over a wide area.

Sycamore trees have a seed case that is shaped so that it spins like helicopter blades. Other plants, such as Dandelions, have very light seeds so they travel longer distances.

ACTIVITY – Can you find more plants that use the wind to disperse their seeds?

Take a look at the different trees, flowers and grasses outside. Which plants do you think use the wind to disperse their seeds?

Try dropping different seeds to compare how they fall. Which seeds are likely to travel longer distances?


More free activities

Met Office Kids – exciting weather games and activities

London weather monitoring website – live readings from OPAL's London weather stations

Seed dispersal animated videos – on the Birmingham Grid for Learning website