Home-made rain gaugeRainbow activities: Love

Rain gauge

In the UK, we see a lot of rain. Have you ever wondered just how much rain is falling during a rain shower? In some places like western Scotland, three metres of rain can fall in a year! You can measure how much rain falls in your area using this cool rain gauge.

You will need

  • A plastic (soft drink) bottle
  • Some stones or pebbles
  • Tape
  • A permanent marker
  • A ruler

What to do

  1. Cut the top off the bottle. You may need to ask an adult to help you with this.
  2. Place some stones in the bottom of the bottle. (This is to stop it getting blown over by the wind!) 
  3. Turn the top upside down and tape it to the bottle.
  4. Use a ruler and a marker pen to make a scale on the bottle.
  5. Pour water into the bottle until it reaches the bottom strip on the scale.

Congratulations, you have finished your rain gauge! Put your rain gauge outside where it can collect water when it starts raining. After a rain shower has finished, check to see how far up the scale the water has risen.

Rain falls into the top of the gauge and collects at the bottom, where it can be easily measured. Try comparing the amount of rain to the length of time the shower lasted, was it a short and heavy rain shower or a long and light one?