Hurricane Irene may be gone, but she leaves behind lives lost, widespread power outages, intense flooding, and property damage across more than 12 states. The storm ranks as the 10th $1 billion disaster of 2011.
Articles to Share with Students
- Why Irene Was More Dangerous Than It Should Have Been
- Hurricane Irene Adds to US Farm Woes. Will it Raise Food Prices?
- NPR AUDIO: Special Series – Hurricane Irene Hits East Coast
- NOAA Environmental Visualization Laboratory
- Hurricanes and Tropical Storms – New York Times Science Topics
- USGS Real-Time Streamflow Conditions for Pennsylvania
- NOAA Education Resources - Hurricanes
Questions for Classroom Discussion
- What is a hurricane? Why is it considered a natural disaster?
- How do scientists study hurricanes? Who else is involved in studying and reporting on hurricanes besides scientists?
- Describe the track and category levels of Tropical Storm/Hurricane Irene. How many U.S. states and countries were impacted by Irene?
- Why is studying hurricanes important?
- What do you think will be the short-term impacts of Irene on the environment? What do you think will be the long-term impacts of Irene on the environment?
- Should people be able to rebuild their homes and businesses that were destroyed by a hurricane? Why/why not?
From the Earth Science Literacy Principles
- Big Idea 1. Earth scientists use repeatable observations and testable ideas to understand and explain our planet. (1.2, 1.3)
- Big Idea 3. Earth is a complex system of interacting rock, water, air, and life. (3.2, 3.4, 3.6, 3.7)
- Big Idea 5. Earth is the water planet. (5.6)
- Big Idea 8. Natural hazards pose risks to humans. (8.1, 8.4, 8.6, 8.7, 8.8)
From The Big Ideas in Earth and Space Science (ESBD)
- The Earth System (1, 2)
- The Atmosphere (10)
- The Hydrosphere (11, 12)
- The Nature of Science (21, 22, 24)
Compiled August 30, 2011, by L.A. Guertin