Rainbow activities: Look
Make a barometer
Scientists use a barometer to help them
understand what the weather will be like. Why don’t you try making
one and see if you can too?
You will need:
Scissors, tape, a balloon, a jar, a rubber band, a straw, a
piece of paper and a pen
- Cut the top off the balloon and throw away the part you blow
- Stretch the balloon over the top of the jar and hold it in
place with the rubber band.
- Place the straw across the top of the jar so that a
third of the straw is hanging over the edge. Stick the straw
to the balloon with tape.
- Put your barometer on a flat surface somewhere inside, next to
a wall and tape a piece of paper or card to the wall behind it.
(Don’t forget to ask permission before you attach anything to the
- Draw a line where the straw rests against the card and label it
- Then draw two more lines on the piece of card that are about a
centimetre apart above and below the medium line label the top one
High and bottom one Low.
- For the next few days check the straw often and mark
its position on the paper for a few days.
- Add notes to tell you what the weather is like next to the
- Examine the paper after several days. Check the markings and
the weather statements you've put next to them. What is the weather
like when the straw is high? What is it like when it is low?
The barometer works by measuring air pressure.
Normally, high air pressure means that we will have good weather
and low pressure means that we could be in for storms and rain. Why
not keep track over the course of a week and see if you can start
predict what the weather will be like?.