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Stevens Institute of Technology

Use Excel to create a Climatogram


Time: Approximately 30 minutes.

Materials: Computers with Microsoft Excel or similar spreadsheet program, Internet access, Student Directions, How to Create a Climatogram instructions, climatogram.xls spreadsheet (13.5 KB), and the climatogram for Rio de Janeiro (Climatogram-Rio.gif).

  1. Provide access to the Student Directions: Use Excel to create a Climatogram and/or print and distribute the Student Worksheet.
  2. Review the Instructions and definition of a climatogram with the students located at the top of the Student Directions.
  3. Open the climatogram for Rio de Janeiro and locate the various components of the chart with the students. For example, you should identify the different axes (temperature and precipitation), scale, temperature line graphs and precipitation bar graph, and the key. Students should then respond to the two questions (Questions 1 and 2 of Part A: Practice using a Climatogram: Rio de Janeiro).
  4. Instruct each student to download and open the climatogram spreadsheet: climatogram.xls (13.5 KB).
    • Note: the weather data is entered as columns. The information can be entered as rows but will alter the step-by-step instructions on how to create a climatogram slightly.
  5. Demonstrate how to locate the "Monthly Averages for [Your City]" using The Weather Channel web site. Don't forget to verify that the radio button for "English Units" is selected.
    • If The Weather Channel web site is down, see Recommendations for back-up instructions.
  6. Instruct how the students should begin entering the data into the climatogram spreadsheet. Once the students have entered the data, proceed to the next step.
  7. Ask the students to open and/or distribute the step-by-step instructions on how to create a climatogram using Microsoft Excel: How to Create a Climatogram. Students should now create their climatogram (Exercise 4 of Part B: Create a Climatogram for your City).
    • If necessary, lead the students through the first few steps until they feel comfortable following the instructions.
  8. Once completed, students should respond to the three questions relating to their climatogram (Questions 1 - 3 of Part C: Analyze your Climatogram).
  • Extra-Credit: Redirect students to the "Monthly Averages for [Your City]" section of The Weather Channel web site and have them add Record High and Low temperatures line graphs using the climate data to their climatograms.


(NOTE: this RWLO is based on Lesson C5: Weather and Climate from the Weather Scope project)

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