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Lesson Plan: For Teachers: Hurricane Hunters

Geography, Science
2 to 3 lessons
To complete research about hurricane-related topics
Students will complete web-based research on a range of hurricane related topics and present their findings.

Lesson Plan


This learning experience is most suitable for students at the secondary level. The intent is to research topics connected to hurricanes, with particular reference to the Canadian experience. This research will focus more on the scientific and geographic nature of hurricanes rather than the human impact. Most of the research will be web-based.

The Task

Inform students that they are "hurricane hunters", and that while working in small groups and employing web resources they will research one of the following facets of hurricanes. After creating a set of detailed point form notes, students will prepare a ten-minute presentation on their findings. Students should include a 1- to 2-page summary sheet of their presentation for the rest of the class. While they will be directed to resources, students will be expected to conduct some research beyond the resources suggested. Feel free to suggest other topics or entertain suggestions by interested students.

Possible Topics

How are hurricanes formed?

How are hurricanes classified?

What are the major impacts of hurricanes on the environment?

What are the major impacts of hurricanes on human beings?

How and why are hurricanes named? (Include a profile of at least two hurricanes).

How can people prepare for hurricanes?

What was the impact of Hurricane Hazel on southern Ontario?

What agencies work to track, predict and study hurricanes?

The Process

While researching, students should keep a good set of notes and a resource list. They will need to organize their work clearly and assign specific tasks to group members. Each group's presentation must be well organized and offer a printed summary handout for the other class members.


Allow students reasonable time to complete their research on this set of topics. Offer guidance on research techniques, group task allocation and presentation strategies.

When the "hurricane hunters" have completed the research stage of their work, allow time for the organization and preparation of both the presentation and the accompanying written summary.

Set aside a class period for group presentations. Encourage listeners to question and comment on the presentations.

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