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Make your own weather instruments!


There are many ways to explore science and weather from home with endless websites dedicated to it. However, the best way to learn is by experimenting!

We have five easy make-at-home weather instruments that are all a great STEM supplemental activity. It's not just making them, but also in recording data and logging what happens at your home using the instruments you make!

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR OWN RAIN GAUGE. The first weather instrument is a simple one to use and of all of these is the most likely to be useful and accurate as some of the other ones will take some time to calibrate and once built.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR OWN THERMOMETER. This one is more difficult and will take some time/effort to turn into one that works with some degree (pun intended) of accuracy.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR OWN BAROMETER. Fairly simple to make, but like the thermometer it's a bit tricky to calibrate because you have to compare what the pressure is when you build it because the pointer will move relative to where it was when the glass is sealed by the balloon.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR OWN HYDROMETER. A hydrometer measures humidity in the air. Like the thermometer and barometer, this works best when made when the atmosphere is fairly neutral, in this case when the atmosphere is neither super dry or humid.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR OWN ANEMOMETER. An anemometer measures wind speed. This experiment does not require any calibration, but there is not indication of wind speed other than observing how fast the cups spin. It is a fairly easy build, though.

Matt Schaefer

Matt Schaefer was promoted to Chief Meteorologist in July of 2019 and has been our evening meteorologist for News 18 since June of 2016. Prior to that, he was our Saturday meteorologist starting in September 2014.

Matt was born and raised in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. He enjoys all the extremes that mother nature throws at the Badger State: from severe thunderstorms to blizzards to subzero temperatures.

Matt studied meteorology in the Midwest as well, earning his Bachelor’s of Science in Meteorology at Valparaiso University in Indiana. There, Matt was heavily involved in VUTV Weather, the Valpo student chapter of AMS/NWA, and VUSIT (Valparaiso University Storm Intercept Team). He’s logged more than 20,000 miles chasing and studying severe storms all across the country and witnessed nine tornadoes including six in one day!

Matt describes himself as a Wisconsin boy at heart and enjoys cheering for the Packers, Brewers, Badgers, and Admirals just to name a few. He loves simply being outdoors and enjoys the Wisconsin wilderness especially in fall, and whitetail deer season!

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