85th AMS Annual Meeting

Sunday, 9 January 2005
Capitalizing on cloudscapes and other cloud opportunities as teaching resources
H. Michael Mogil, How the WeatherWorks, Rockville, MD
On October 4, 2004, the U.S. Postal Service will at last release a set of 15 cloud stamps commemorating Luke Howard's cloud naming scheme. The stamps will showcase actual cloud photographs and not artist's illustrations. Organized by altitude, the stamps also contain factual information on their reverse side. The header briefly describes what cloudscapes are all about.

Never before, in the annals of U.S. postage stamp history, has the subject of weather received such attention. With the arrival of these stamps we, in the meteorological and educational communities, have an opportunity to capitalize on these stamps as a meaningful, teachable tool in our school visits, community outreach and other activities. The opportunities transcend public and private education, university and corporate workplaces and governmental weather services.

In this paper / poster, I plan to showcase these postage stamps and describe how they came into being. Trust me, the effort was long and arduous. I'll also address what others (e.g., USA Today, Science Weekly Magazine and How The Weatherworks) are doing to capitalize on clouds to foster learning not only in the weather arena, but also across the many curricula subjects. You'll see some of the many ways you can use these stamps to increase sky awareness in your community and in your schools…and have fun doing it!

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