Geography in the news- Tornadoes in Texas and Oklahoma

Forecasters had predicted a, “major severe weather outbreak,” on Monday 20th May 2019 in Texas and Oklahoma (USA) including a series of violent tornadoes. The tornadoes were expected to be the worst for two years, so more than 150,000 school children were allowed to stay home as a precaution and residents were urged to take shelter.

Severe thunderstorms did hit parts of Texas and Oklahoma on Monday evening, producing small tornadoes, but as of early Tuesday the region appeared to have been largely spared from the destructive weather that had been feared by forecasters!

After this however severe thunderstorms did drench and flood parts of Oklahoma on Tuesday and enormous hail stones the size of limes fell!

Weird, wild and wonderful weather!

Tornadoes are sometimes called twisters. If a tornado happens over water it is called a waterspout. Not all tornadoes can be seen but their high wind speeds and fast rotation often form a funnel of water.

The Fujita Scale is used to measure the strength of tornadoes. F0 tornadoes cause very little damage whereas F5 tornadoes cause massive damage.

Many tornadoes have wind speeds less than 100 miles per hour (161 km per hour) but  more serious tornadoes can reach wind speeds of over 300 miles per hour (483 km per hour).

The country that has the most tornadoes is the USA, with about 1200 tornadoes every year. Most of these occur in an area nicknamed ‘Tornado Alley’. The US States most frequently hit by tornadoes are: Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma and Florida.

The deadliest tornado ever recorded in the world was in 1989 in Bangladesh, which killed 1300 people

Did you know?

In the southern hemisphere tornadoes usually rotate in a clockwise direction, but in in the northern hemisphere tornadoes usually rotate in an anti-clockwise direction!

Fabulous facts- Did you know?

What is a river?

  • A river is a large natural stream of water flowing in a channel to the sea, a lake, or another river.
  • A river begins at a source follows a path called a course, and ends at a mouth or mouths.
  • The passage where the river flows is called the river bed and the earth on each side is called a river bank.
  • The movement of water in a river is called a current, this is usually strongest near the river’s source.


·         The River Severn is 219.97 miles long.

·         The River Trent is 185.17 miles long.

·         The River Thames is 214.99 miles long.


  • The longest river in the world is the Nile River length (4132 miles)
  • The second longest river in the world is the Amazon River (4000 miles).
  • The longest river in the USA is the Missouri River (2,340 miles )
  • Rivers normally contain freshwater.
  • Rivers are found on every continent and on nearly every type of land.
  • Most of the world’s major cities are located near the banks of rivers.
  • The Ganges, Yangtze and Indus rivers are three of the most polluted on Earth.

·         Amazing but true…On January 15th 2009, a US plane, after being hit by birds, made an emergency landing in the Hudson River that runs through New York. The pilot managed to land the plane in the river with the loss of no lives!

Geography Genius Quiz Questions-

  1. What is the longest river in England called?
  2. What is a meander?
  3. What are the 3 processes all rivers do? (Clue: TED!)
  4. How many rivers are there in the world?
  5. What is the world’s widest river?
  6. The Nile enters the Mediterranean Sea as a delta. What is a delta?


ANSWERS IN BY Monday 10th June to 5EV

Winners will be announced in an assembly

Single-Use Plastic Free February

We have been looking in assembly this week how to support the single-use plastic free February campaign. Today Alison the Bee Lady came into assembly to talk about the bee’s wax wraps that she makes.