Weather Forecasting

Weather forecasting is important because it helps up to know the weather around us. Weather people or meteorologists are able to use all different kinds of scientific technology to help to predict what the future weather is going to be.


How Does Weather Forecasting Work?

Weather forecasting works by meteorologists collecting as much data that they can about the current weather and what is happening in the atmosphere. They use different parts of the weather such as how humid it is, what the temperature is and how the wind is blowing in order to make predictions.

Sometimes, forecasting the weather is not easy and just because someone says that the weather is going to be one way or the other, this is just a guess. Even though meteorologists study the weather and they learn what to look for, the weather can change in a matter of minutes and it can cause the forecasting to be wrong.


Meteorology is called the study of the Earth’s atmosphere. Scientists who do these types of studies are called meteorologists. When they study the atmosphere, they will try to predict what the weather is going to be like for that week or that day.

Remember, a prediction is just that, a prediction and it is not 100% the way things always go.

Meteorologists study different parts of the atmosphere and they find out if the weather is going to have low or high pressure and what those pressures will do. They also look at different types of fronts to see if the weather is going to be rainy, hot, snowy or cold.

Air Pressure

As we studied in previous lessons, we learned that the air pressure can make a huge difference in how the weather is going to be. When there is a low pressure of air, it means that there will be more clouds and that it might rain and get warmer. When the pressure is low, it is showing with a red L.

When the air pressure is high, it can cause there to be cooler days and a dry day. When you look on a weather map, a blue H means high pressure.

What is a Weather Front?

A weather front is when there will be a system of low or high pressure. When there is a cold front, it means that cold air will replace the warm air and it will get colder.

A warm front means the opposite and that it will replace the cold air and get warmer.

When a stationary front happens, this means that one front stays in place for a while so you will see long periods of that weather, warmth, cold, or even rain.

An occluded front is when cold air takes over the warm air.

A dry line front is when there is a boundary that is separating the warm air from the dry air and there can be a huge temperature change when these fronts happen.

What Kind of Tools to Meteorologists Use?

Meteorologists use all kinds of tools to predict the weather such as computer models, satellites, rain gauges, barometers, and even Doppler radar systems.

A computer model can be used to show the weather and to measure the different information that the other tools use.

With a satellite, meteorologists are able to predict storms and how fast they are moving.

A rain gauge helps to determine how much rain we have had and how much more is coming.

Barometers are used to measure the air pressure.

Doppler radar systems also help predict storms such as rain, hail and other storms. These help the meteorologists to be able to give warning when bad weather is about to happen.


More Facts About Weather Forecasting:

  • A doppler radar helps to predict tornados and hurricanes.
  • When there is dew, it can change the temperature.
  • The Dew point is when water leaves the air.
  • Air pressure can affect the way people feel in their bodies.
  • Humidity is how much water is in the air.
  • Meteorologists have an important job to help keep people safe when bad storms are approaching.

What Did You Learn?

  • What is meteorology?
    Meteorology is the study of weather.
  • What is someone that studies weather called?
    A person that studies weather is a scientist and they are called meteorologists.
  • Is weather forecasting always accurate?
    No, sometimes meteorologists get the weather wrong.
  • How do meteorologists forecast weather?
    The meteorologists look at different weather aspects such as wind, humidity and temperature to decide what is going to happen in the weather.
  • What are the two types of air pressures?
    There are two types of air pressures, low air pressure and high air pressure. These air pressures help to determine what the weather will be like.