File Name: el nino and la nina worksheet .zip
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El Niño Teaching Box
So here you go, your first answer. What is the difference between El Nino and La Nina? We're just coming out of a record-breaking El Nino and headed right into its opposite, La Nina, so this is a good question.
Let's dive in. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, each full ENSO cycle lasts three to seven years, but within the cycle, weather patterns are irregular. La Nina generally follows El Nino with neutral conditions in between, but there are no guarantees.
Sometimes the neutral condition break between El Nino and La Nina can be skipped. The two phases have a global effect on both temperature and moisture conditions. Let's break down the two phases:. El Nino. El Nino causes rising motion in the Pacific, and sinking motion in the Atlantic. El Nino means "the little boy.
The increasing heat in the ocean triggers rising motion in the atmosphere above, which intensifies storms and rain over the Pacific. Warm Pacific Ocean temperatures also shift the jet stream south, making the atmosphere more unstable there. The instability then makes the southern portion of the United States more susceptible to severe storms and tornadoes. So, during El Nino, the southern portion of the United States sees wetter than normal conditions, but most of the country sees either neutral or drier than normal conditions.
You can thank this warm water in the Pacific for better winter temperatures, because during El Nino most of the United States is warmer than average. Only the southeastern part of the United States sees colder than normal temperatures. The effects of El Nino are strongest in the winter, and cause different weather conditions across the United States. All of these effects can be felt year round because El Nino can last anywhere from 9 to 12 months, but the strongest consequences are seen in the winter months, and can linger into early spring.
La Nina. La Nina causes sinking motion in the Pacific, and rising motion in the Atlantic. La Nina means "the little girl. Strengthening winds across the Pacific push the warm surface water away, bringing up cooler water below. This cooler water initiates sinking motion in the atmosphere over the Pacific, which dries things out.
The cool water can also shift the position of the jet stream, shifting the threat for severe weather north. The Pacific northwest is colder and the southeastern portion of the United States is warmer than average. As for moisture, wetter than normal or neutral conditions are expected across most of the country in the north, and drier conditions in the south. La Nina conditions can last just as long as El Nino conditions, anywhere from 9 to 12 months.
The effects of La Nina are strongest in the winter, and cause different weather patterns across the United States. What causes these different phases to occur? Meteorologists and climatologists are still studying El Nino and La Nina.
Though both begin with either weakening or strengthening surface winds in the Pacific, what causes the change in wind is still unknown. Does it affect us right now?
The strongest El Nino on record officially finished this May. But now, La Nina conditions are starting to make their way in. Since these phases only strongly influence winter weather, not summer, there are no immediate impacts.
However, if the La Nina stays on schedule for late summer to fall, it could suppress hurricane formation in the Pacific, and enhance it in the Atlantic. NOAA uses a combination of observed conditions temperatures, rainfall amounts, winds , and computer model forecasts to classify El Nino or La Nina conditions. Here are the signs they look for:. Here's a quick look at how meteorologists decide whether or not to classify weather as El Nino or La Nina conditions:. Kelly Reardon is cleveland.
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Community Rules apply to all content you upload or otherwise submit to this site. Ad Choices. Facts-first reporting from the source you trust. Subscribe now. Facebook Share. Twitter Share. By Kelly Reardon, cleveland.
Meteorologist Kelly Reardon answers readers' questions. This episode explains the difference between the natural cycle of the El Nino Southern Oscillation, and its change from the El Nino phase to the La Nina phase conditions.
How El Niño and La Niña Affect the Weather
There is considerable interest in the likely magnitude of South American corn and soybean production in , with much of the current focus on weather developments influencing yield prospects. Argentina corn and soybean production projections currently sit at 1. The question is: Should the potential for trend yield deviations be adjusted due to this episode? Neutral indicates that conditions are near their long-term average. Over Indonesia, rainfall tends to become reduced while rainfall increases over the tropical Pacific Ocean.
Because of El Niño
Ask students to brainstorm what negative effects they think would be likely to accompany the rise in temperature, including any global natural disasters. Prompt students to think about the impact on weather and marine life, and to include such events as droughts, floods, mudslides, hurricanes, typhoons, and wildfires. Divide the class into small groups and distribute blank outline maps of the world.
Learn how to incorporate these teaching materials into your class. Find out what's included with each module Learn how it can be adapted to work in your classroom See how your peers at hundreds of colleges and university across the country have used these materials to engage their students. These materials have been reviewed for their alignment with the Next Generation Science Standards as detailed below. Overview Students examine and analyze data to understand ENSO and to predict how local ecosystems and people will be impacted. Cross Cutting Concepts Systems and System Models: Systems may interact with other systems; they may have sub-systems and be a part of larger complex systems.
So here you go, your first answer. What is the difference between El Nino and La Nina? We're just coming out of a record-breaking El Nino and headed right into its opposite, La Nina, so this is a good question. Let's dive in. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, each full ENSO cycle lasts three to seven years, but within the cycle, weather patterns are irregular.
Found in: science ; ; ; The year was the second warmest and seventh wettest winter since These lessons and resources describe the cyclical event and how it affects global weather, agriculture, and the spread of disease.