Meteors

Since 2009, the Seine-Saint-Denis County Council has been backing “la Culture et l’Art au Collège (CAC)”. This project is based to a large extent on the presence in class for several weeks (40h) of an artist or scientist whose mission is to engage the students in a process of research and creation. 

 

Tutors: Imma Bastida, Thierry Elias/ physicists, Mathieu Lachatre/ PhD student with the LISA, Rémi Meynadier/ doctor in atmospheric science, Etienne Terrenoire/ research scientist specialising in climate modelling 

Project manager: Anna Mezey

 

Objectives:
Before appearing on our screens, weather reports pass through the expert hands of observers who are capable of understanding the clouds, analysing the atmosphere and interpreting the winds. Under the supervision of a research scientist, the students develop an observation protocol, test it locally over several months and then, at the end of the year, attempt to forecast the weather to come.

Workshop:
Weather and climate
During this initial phase, the students describe their relationship with weather events: how does the weather affect their day-to-day lives? Does it affect them all in the say way? Where do they get information about the weather? When the subject of COP21 is introduced, the debate develops into a discussion about the definition of the weather and the difference between weather and climate.

Parameters and instruments
Each session is organised to address a distinct weather parameter (temperature, rain, wind, atmospheric pressure and humidity). The students study an aspect of the weather, handle the instruments to measure it and conduct experiments: how do clouds form? Or the colours of the sky? What about the wind? Etc. The students have to try and take a daily measurement and record it in their logbooks.  

Protocols and forecasts
Meteorology is a science that requires notions of both physics and geography, but the students also learn that more empirical interpretations are used, especially when common sense is called for, when observing the weather or studying it through its portrayal (paintings and proverbs). The class organises a forecast project and prepares various experiments that will be carried out in public. 

Outcome:
A real weather station is set up in the school grounds or hall. The students and contributor give continual demonstrations to explain why the sky appears blue, how clouds form and how to measure humidity. They also make weather forecasts for the days to come. 

 

Outings (selection):
- SIRTA - SITE INSTRUMENTAL DE RECHERCHE PAR TÉLÉDÉTECTION ATMOSPHÉRIQUE, ECOLE POYTECHNIQUE, PALAISEAU: VISIT AND MEASUREMENTS AT THE PLATFORM, DEMONSTRATION OF THE LIDAR (INSTRUMENT THAT ANALYSES THE MOVEMENT OF AEROSOLS IN THE ATMOSPHERE).
- PALAIS DE LA DÉCOUVERTE: VISIT TO THE “QUESTIONS D'ATMOSPHÈRE” EXHIBITION.
- PARC ANDRÉ CITROËN: “BALLON DE PARIS”. THE STUDENTS DISCOVER THE FLYING LABORATORY THAT INDICATES AIR QUALITY.

Participating schools:
- Class 4 e F, Collège Jean Moulin, Neuilly-Plaisance
- Class 5e 2, Collège Colonel Fabien, Saint-Denis
- Class 4 e A, Collège Evariste Galois, Epinay-sur-Seine
- Class 3e, “physics project option”, Collège Jean Jaurès, Pantin
- Class 6 e, Collège Marais de Villiers, Montreuil

 

Photo and scenography: ELODIE DESCOUBES

Meteors
Meteors
Meteors