Snowball fights, making snowmen, sledging or simply rolling over snow- who does not like it? But you’ll find your kids will also wonder why and how do we experience snow. Share these facts with kids who love playing in the snow and get them to learn all about snow. What is snow and blizzards to which region has the highest snowfall – share all these fun trivia with your kids.
Important Facts About Snow For Children
There are key facts about the snow that you must share with your children. Read on to find out more:
1. How Does Snow Form
Water from the surface of the earth evaporates, and these water vapours start climbing higher up. At higher altitudes, where the clouds’ temperature is very cold, water vapour freezes to form ice. The ice crystals form around tiny specks of dirt that have been carried into the atmosphere by the wind. When the snow crystals become heavy enough, they fall to earth as snow. Snow falls in soft flakes, which are joined lightly together. Each snowflake is made of snow crystals.
2. Facts About Snowflakes
Snowflakes are crystals of ice formed around bits of dirt in the air. Each snowflake could have up to 200 crystals and is entirely different from another, and has a geometrical shape with five points. Snow gets packed together when snowflakes collect.
3. Why Does Snowfall to the Ground
An air mass is a large air area with a similar temperature and moisture as the ground below it. When a cold, dry air mass strikes with a warm, moist or wet air mass creates a snowstorm. The warm air weighs less than the cold air and floats higher above the cold air resulting in moisture (water vapour) forming snowflakes. These snowflakes then fall because the cold air is too heavy to hold them in the air.
4. What are the Different Kinds of Snow
Thundersnow is when snow falls with thunder and lightning. Snow with algae growing on it is watermelon snow. The algae are reddish-brown. Watermelon snow is commonly found in the Canadian Rockies. Light and fluffy snow is called powder.
5. What Causes Snow, and Where Does it Generally Snow
For it to snow, the temperature must be less than 32 degrees, and the moisture content in the sky must be high. Snow is therefore common in areas of high altitudes, mountainous regions and in places where it is freezing. Some areas where snow is common are Europe, the Northern States of the USA, Russia, Antarctica, Canada, Greenland, and many other places in Asia.
Fun Snow Facts and Information For Kids
- Heavy snowfall is called a snowstorm, and a blizzard is snowstorms that are combined with strong winds. Blizzards are very dangerous.
- About 80% of the world’s freshwater supply comes from snow and ice.
- Snowflakes form in a variety of shapes.
- Snow is actually not white but clear. It appears to be white because the light reflects against the ice crystals. Snow does not always look white. When coal was widely used in homes and factories, a lot of coal dust travelled through the air. The coal dust would then be absorbed in the clouds, and snow would often look grey.
- Snow at the North Pole and the South Pole reflect heat into space. The snow then acts as a mirror to the sun. The light then bounces off the snow and travels into space. Snow reflects high levels of ultraviolet radiation that can cause snow blindness. That is why one needs to wear sunglasses, goggles or some eye protection. Snow blindness is caused by snow’s ability to reflect ultraviolet radiation. The reflective properties of snow cause sunburned cornea (which is a clear cover of the eye).
- The world’s largest recorded snowflake is said to be 15 inches across 8 inches thick. Found in Fort Keogh, Montana in the United States of America on 28th January 1887, it has found its place in the Guinness Book of World Records.
- Mount Rainier in the State of Washington holds the record for the most snowfall in a year. Between 19th February 1971 to 19th February 1972, it snowed 1,224 inches.
- Mount Rainer is also the snowiest place in the USA and has received more than 640 inches of snow per year between 1920 and 2011.
- The largest amount of snow to fall in a 24 hour period was in Silver Lake, Colorado, in 1921. It was recorded as 76 inches.
- In 2008, the largest snowman was built by residents of Bethel, Maine, USA and was 122 feet tall.
- Heilongjiang Province in China in 2008 had the largest snow sculpture ever built. Built by 600 sculptors from 40 countries, the sculpture was 656 feet long and 115 feet tall.
- Snow is a form of precipitation. Rain, hail and sleet are other forms of precipitation.
- The Wapusk Trail has the longest seasonal winter road and holds the Guinness Book of World Record for it. It functions only during the winter months. 467 miles long, the road connects Gillam Manitoba to Peawanuk, Ontario, Canada. The road is closed by the end of March when the weather starts to get warmer.
- A lot of winter sports rely on snow. Some common winter sports include snowboarding and skiing.
- Tobogganing (sliding down snow-covered slopes on runner-less sledges) and making snowmen are some favourite pastimes when it snows.
From how snow is formed, what a snowflake is, different kinds of snowstorms and the varied activities that one can do when it snows, these facts above are great for kids to understand. A wonderful meteorological event, learning about snow can be an interesting session for kids.