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Activity

Make a Cloud Mobile

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Instructions

Ready to get started with this activity? To keep track of your progress, check off the instructions for each step below as they are completed. Make sure to check the box of the last step when you’re done to receive congratulations for your completed activity!

Consider this:

In this activity, you’ll be creating a collection of different types of clouds. The pattern for the cloud shapes can be printed out below and then transferred or you can draw your own based on the pattern.

  • Cardboard, Styrofoam, or cardstock (reusing old take-out boxes works best)
  • (2) wooden skewers or twigs: one 12 inches one 8 inches
  • White sewing thread
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Clear tape
  • Tinsel, or mylar shred, or embroidery floss
  • Draw the patterns on your cardboard or stock or styrofoam and use scissors to cut out the cloud shapes.
  • Find the cumulonimbus and nimbostratus cloud shapes. These are the two types of rain clouds.
  • To make rain, fold the Mylar shred (or string, or embroidery floss) in half and tape the pieces to the bottom of the cloud.
  • Use the point of the pencil or skewer to poke holes in the tops of each of the clouds. These are the holes you will use to hang the clouds from the sticks. Depending on the size of your clouds you may need two holes to balance the cloud while it hangs.
  • Cut 10 to 12 pieces of thread that are about 15 inches long.
  • Weave a piece of thread through one of the holes in the cloud shape.
  • Tie a knot in the thread to secure the cloud on the thread.
  • Repeat this step until there is a piece of thread knotted in every hole in the clouds.
  • The cirrus and cumulonimbus clouds go highest in the atmosphere; tie the free end of the thread from each of those clouds to the long stick.
  • The nimbostratus and cumulus clouds are lower in the atmosphere; tie those clouds to the short stick.
  • Use two pieces of thread and tie the ends of the short stick to the two points on the long stick.
  • The short stick (and clouds that are lowest in the atmosphere) will hang below the long stick.
  • Tie a thread near the center of the long stick. You may have to experiment to find the right spot to balance the weight of the mobile and the clouds during construction.
  • Do hang the mobile somewhere that it can move in the breeze.
  • Cirrus clouds are made of ice.
  • About 67% of the Earth’s surface is covered by clouds.
  • Clouds are not weightless.
  • Clouds are white because they reflect light from the sun. Clouds that are gray contain water and don’t reflect light.

Clark image

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