Severe Weather STEM Challenge


Help your students understand just how severe weather works and how to design structures that can withstand it. This STEM challenge is sure to engage your students while focusing on the strong winds of hurricanes, tornadoes, and other types of severe weather.

This weather STEM Challenge is a hands-on investigation of different types of severe weather that encourages application of what students know about strong winds and the need for strong structures while they design and create houses for tornadoes, hurricanes, or a thunderstorm.

In this activity, students will work through the engineering process by brainstorming, planning, designing, and carrying out their plans to design a house that can withstand strong winds. Since it is a STEM challenge, students will test their designs, reflect, and possibly have to rework them.


File Type

PDF (Acrobat) Document File

Be sure that you have an application to open this file type before downloading and/or purchasing.


This STEM Challenge Covers:

✓ Measurement
✓ Severe Weather
✓ Hurricanes, Thunderstorms, Tornadoes
✓ Weather Safety
✓ The engineering process

With This STEM Challenge, You’ll Get:

✓ Non-fiction reading piece to help build the background knowledge of the teacher and/or the student
✓ Engaging introduction to the STEM activity and problem
✓ Higher level thinking, problem solving skills, and cooperative learning
✓ Troubleshooting tips, extension ideas, and other helpful hints to make this smooth
✓ Practice sheet
✓ Detailed teacher information
✓ Reflection questions and grading rubric
.… and so much more!

Materials Used
• recycled materials (cardboard, Styrofoam, glue, craft sticks, rubber bands, etc)
• blow dryer, fan, or for full effect, a leaf blower (If you choose the leaf blower you will need to have access to a larger area such as the school gym or outdoors)
• rulers/meter sticks

How You Can Use This Unit:

✓ Broken up over several days
✓ As a supplement to an already established program
✓ Science centers
✓ Whole group, small group, partners, or individual work
✓ Enrichment activities

These lessons are perfect for the growth mindset classroom!

This STEM challenge aligns with NGSS for weather and engineering standards! Help your students become problem solvers!

This STEM challenge is detailed, with background information, extension ideas, troubleshooting tips, and much more!

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