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So we have weather and climate... but are they the same thing? No, no they are not. But they are both super important to how the geosphere is shaped. In this episode of Crash Course Kids, Sabrina chats with us about the differences between weather and climate.

///Standards Used in This Video///
5-ESS2-1. Develop a model using an example to describe ways the geosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and/or atmosphere interact. [Clarification Statement: Examples could include the influence of the ocean on ecosystems, landform shape, and climate; the influence of the atmosphere on landforms and ecosystems through weather and climate; and the influence of mountain ranges on winds and clouds in the atmosphere. The geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere are each a system.] [Assessment Boundary: Assessment is limited to the interactions of two systems at a time.]

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Producer & Editor: Nicholas Jenkins
Cinematographer & Director: Michael Aranda
Host: Sabrina Cruz
Script Supervisor: Mickie Halpern
Writer: Kay Boatner

Executive Producers: John & Hank Green
Consultant: Shelby Alinsky
Script Editor: Blake de Pastino

Thought Cafe Team:
Stephanie Bailis
Cody Brown
Suzanna Brusikiewicz
Jonathan Corbiere
Nick Counter
Kelsey Heinrichs
Jack Kenedy
Corey MacDonald
Tyler Sammy
Nikkie Stinchcombe
James Tuer
Adam Winnik
(Crash Course Kids intro)

Sabrina: If you're like me, you know what your perfect day looks like, weather-wise: sunny, rainy, snowy, whatever. Personally, I love it when it's cool and cloudy, like just cold enough to wear a sweater. You probably know that weather has something to do with how hot or cold something to do with how hot or cold it is outside, but really there's a lot more to it than just temperature. So grab your sunglasses, your rain boots and your most colorful scarf, because today we're talking weather.

Let's start with a big and pretty basic question. What exactly is weather?

(text: Big question)

Well, weather is the condition of the air, or the atmosphere, on our planet. But the thing is, even though there's only one atmosphere on Earth, the weather isn't the same all over the world. There are many different factors that can change the atmosphere in a certain area, and together they determine what the weather is like from one minute and from one place to the next.

These factors include temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction, and lots of other things, but when you're talking about the overall weather patterns from a certain region of the world, you're talking about the area's climate. Weather is the minute by minute changes in the atmosphere, climate is what the weather is like over a long period of time in a specific area.

Now the weather is constantly changing, all the time, every day. Think of the weather as being like that one friend of yours who can never make up their mind about what movie they want to see or what restaurant they want to go to. Just because it's beautiful and sunny outside when you wake up, that doesn't mean you won't need an umbrella before the day's over, and raining is just one of the things that weather can do.

Rain, of course, is just a form of precipitation, or water that falls from the sky. It happens when droplets of water in the clouds, or sometimes ice crystals, get heavy enough and fall to the ground. If they're crystals, the warm air near the ground will melt them as they fall forming liquid rain drops. But: (sings) Do you want to build a snowman?

Another common form of precipitation is snow. Snow is just ice crystals that don't melt into liquid water as they fall. Another snow-like form of precipitation is sleet. It's what happens when ice crystals fell towards the ground, partly melt, and then refreeze again.

But other kinds of weather can be way more severe, and the most common kind of extreme weather is a form I'm sure you're familiar with: thunderstorms. A thunderstorm can happen when strong winds make drops of water and pieces of ice collide and break apart inside a storm. This causes electrical energy to build up, which creates a little thing called lighting.

But all of this rain and snow and sleet I've been talking about, that's just weather, and while weather can change in a few hours, a climate takes hundreds, thousands, even millions of years to change. So how can we better understand the difference between weather and climate? How about we send little cartoon Sabrina on an imaginary trip for a month.

(text: investigation)

OK, here she is at her destination, Yuma Arizona. Let's pretend it's the fifth of the month. On this particular day, where cartoon Sabrina is, it's warm but very cloudy and a light rain has been falling on her - sorry me - all day. Since clouds and rain are what the atmosphere has to offer on this particular spot at this moment, and it can go away at any minute, those conditions are-- yep, the weather.

Now let's fast-forward to the tenth of the month. Hello sun! Looks like tiny me won't be needing an umbrella today. How about the 15th? More sun. The 20th? Still sunny. The 25th? You guessed it, sunny with a chance of well, sunny. And finally on the 30th, the sun's still shining, little Sabrina I hope you packed your sunscreen.

So what does this quick time lapse of a month in Yuma tell us?

(text: Conclusion)

It tells us that Yuma, Arizona is a pretty sunny place. in fact, on most days it's one of the sunniest cities on the whole planet. So, the city's weather patterns existed before mini-me arrived, and will continue after she leaves. In that case, you could say that Yuma has a sunny climate, even if its weather on a certain given day happens to be rainy.

Now you know that weather is much more than just temperature, its the condition of our planet's atmosphere and it's constantly changing. You also know that weather and climate are not the same thing. But I saved the extreme stuff for last, the severe weather stuff, that is. You'll have to tune in next time to learn more about tornadoes, hurricanes, and blizzards.