Air Quality Health Index classroom kit, grades 5 and 6, health: chapter 5

Station 2: Behind the Scenes: Canada’s Next Top (AQHI Model!)


Students use weather information and the Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) to make choices about how to prepare for different outdoor activities.

Real-World Connection

Planning for different activities in consideration of weather and air quality conditions.

Curriculum Themes

A complete set of provincial and territorial curriculum links can be found at the end of the stations.

Choose appropriate clothing to meet particular weather challenges and give reasons for appropriate dress.

Appreciate how important it is to be able to forecast weather and to have suitable clothing or shelter to endure various types of weather.



Follow Up

When each group has finished the station and taken their pictures, ensure that they are all transferred to a computer so that each group can prepare their own Air Quality Health Slide Show.


AQHI Website

Station 2: Student Instructions

What kind of outdoor activities do you like to do? Soccer? Hiking? Hide and seek? Do you prepare for all these activities in the same way?

You don’t need the same clothing or equipment for all outdoor activities. Some reasons for this are because:

In this learning centre, you are going to make some decisions about what is the best clothing or equipment for different activities. You will need to think about the weather and air quality conditions.

  1. Decide what activity you would like to explore and write it on your Student Handout. Make sure each group member selects a different activity.
  2. Take turns picking a piece of paper out of each of the four hats at the learning centre (Raining and pouring!, Where’s the wind?, How hot is hot?, and AQHI.
  3. Record the information on the Student Handout. Then find your AQHI value on the table to see what health messages you need to consider.
  4. Each group member: Decide if you want to be a designer, model, sketch artist, or photographer. Everyone can be a sketch artist if you don’t have access to clothing/gear.
  5. As a group, create an Air Quality Health slideshow on the computer.


From the bag provided, choose clothing/gear and equipment/tools that are best suited for the activity. Work with one of the models to put on the gear.


Take action shots of the models doing each activity (that is, if the AQHI and weather allow)! If not, work with the model to strike a pose and change their expression to show that the activity has to be cancelled. When you’re done, transfer the pictures to a computer.

Child jumping high into a bright, blue sky


You are now Canada’s Next Top AQHI Model for your activity. Work with the designer and photographer by trying on clothes and striking a pose! Based on the AQHI and weather conditions, strike a pose or change your expression to show whether or not you could go ahead with the activity.

Sketch Artists:

Sketch a “Canada’s Next Top AQHI Model” for your activity. The picture must include a name for the model, the type of activity, all appropriateitems of clothing in the colour that best reflects the AQHIreading for the day. Be sure that the pose and face shows us whether or not the activity will be called off or go ahead for the AQHI and weather conditions.

AQHI and Outdoor Activities

Scale from 1-10 plus with 1-3 being low risk,  4-6 being moderate, 7- 10 being high risk and 10+ being very high risk.
AQHI and Outdoor Activities
Health Risk AQHI Health Messages
    At Risk Population General Population
Low 1-3 Enjoy your usual outdoor activities. Ideal air quality for outdoor activities.
Moderate 4-6 Consider reducing or rescheduling strenuous activities outdoor if you are experiencing symptoms. No need to modify your usual outdoor activities unless you experience symptoms such as coughing or throat irritation.
High 7-10 Reduce or reschedule strenuous activities outdoors. Children and the elderly should also take it easy. Consider reducing or rescheduling strenuous activities outdoors if you experience symptoms such as coughing and throat irritation.
Very High Above 10 Avoid strenuous activities outdoors. Children and the elderly should also avoid outdoor physical exertion. Reduce or reschedule strenuous activities outdoors, especially if you experience symptoms such as coughing and throat irritation.

Station 2: Weather Condition Hat Cards

Cut up the following chits of paper and place them into a container or hat.

How much rain? (Precipitation)

Sunny A mix of sun and cloud Cloudy periods
Showers Cloudy with sunny periods 50% chance of showers
70% chance of showers Showers with thunderstorms 40% chance of showers with a risk of thunder showers
Sunny Sunny Cloudy with a 60% chance of showers

Where’s the wind? (Wind speed)

15 km/h 6 km/h 25 km/h
4 km/h 2 km/h 17 km/h
9 km/h 11 km/h 13 km/h
21 km/h 3 km/h Calm

How hot is hot? (Temperature)

27oC 18oC -20oC
22oC 10oC 2oC
17oC 21oC 19oC
-10oC 30oC 0oC


1 2 3
4 5 6
7 8 9

Station 2: Student Handout

Student Handout Form




1. Complete the following table with the information from your cards.

A 4 card package, each allowing for a meteorological element description (precipitation, wind speed, temperature, AQHI).

2. How should you dress for today? Fill out the following areas.

On my head, I will wear... Because

On my ..., I will wear... Because:

On my legs, I will wear... Because:

On my feet, I will wear... Because:

On my other body parts, I will wear... Because:

3. What should you bring with you?

4. Why is it important to be able to forecast?

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