Here are some definitions and information about the water cycle and watershed (provided by a youth member- Thanks Molly!)
Water Cycle Glossary of Terms
Aquifer: An aquifer is an underground layer that contains groundwater.
Atmosphere: A unit of atmosphere measures the air pressure at sea level, which is about 14.7 pounds per square inch.
Climate: The climate of a location includes all of the weather conditions for this location over an extended period of time.
Cloud: A cloud is a visible mass of small water droplets or tiny ice crystals that are suspended in the atmosphere.
Cloud Condensation Nuclei: Water vapor surrounds tiny particles, condensing in clouds to become raindrops.
Condensation: Condensation is the process by which water vapor changes into liquid.
Current: Currents are predictable and steady flows of fluid in a larger body of fluid.
Density: Density describes the amount of things in a specific space.
Dew Point: Dew point is the temperature at which water in the air condenses to become water droplets near the ground.
Ecosystem: An ecosystem is a community of living and nonliving things in an area.
Erosion: Erosion happens when soil is worn away, usually by wind, water, or ice.
Evaporation: Evaporation is the process of water changing into water vapor.
Evapotranspiration: When moisture from the soil evaporates into the atmosphere or when transpiration from plants occurs, this is called evapotranspiration.
Fog: Clouds near the ground are known as fog.
Freshwater: A lake, river, or spring is a source of freshwater, which animals can drink.
Glacier: A glacier is a mass of ice that moves slowly across a land mass.
Great Lakes: The Great Lakes are the biggest freshwater bodies of water in the world, located in the United States.
Greenhouse Gas: Gases in the atmosphere that absorb solar heat reflected by Earth’s surface, contributing to warming of the atmosphere, are greenhouse gases.
Groundwater: Groundwater is water found in an aquifer.
Humidity: The amount of water vapor in the air is the humidity.
Ice: Ice is water in solid form.
Ice Cap: An ice cap is an area of less than 19,000 square miles covered by ice.
Ice Sheet: Ice sheets are glacial ice areas that cover a large expanse.
Lake: A lake is a body of water that is surrounded by land.
Microscopic: Microscopic describes something very small.
Pollutant: A pollutant is a substance that harms a natural resource.
Precipitation: Precipitation includes all types of water that fall to Earth.
River: A river is a big stream of fresh water that flows.
Runoff: When fluid overflows from a farm or factory, it’s known as runoff.
Snowmelt: Melted water from snow is snowmelt.
Temperature: The level of heat or cold, measured by a thermometer, is temperature.
Transpiration: Water that evaporates from plants is transpiration.
Vapor: Vapor is liquid that is suspended in air.
Water Cycle: Water moves between the land, bodies of water, and atmosphere in a process known as the water cycle.
Weather: Weather describes the state of the atmosphere, and it includes atmospheric pressure, temperature, humidity, cloudiness, precipitation, and wind.
Wind: Wind is air that moves from areas of high pressure to low-pressure zones.
Learn More About Water!
- What Is the Water Cycle? The water cycle is the path water takes as it moves around on Earth.
- The Water Cycle: Water never stops moving between land, bodies of water, and the air.
- Learn About the Water Cycle: The sun helps to power the water cycle by causing evaporation.
- Overview of the Water Cycle: The water cycle has no beginning and no end.
- The Water Cycle: Earth only has a specific amount of water, and the water cycles continuously through stages such as evaporation, precipitation, and collection.
- The Fundamentals of the Water Cycle: The water on Earth is always moving from one place and form to another.
- The Water Cycle: As the sun shines, it turns water into a vapor that rises and eventually gathers as clouds.
- Water Cycle Information: Without the water cycle occurring all the time, there couldn’t be life on Earth.
- The Water Cycle: Watch this video to learn how energy from the sun makes water move and change form in the water cycle.
- Water Cycle: An Easy Explanation for Kids: The water cycle provides fresh water to plants and animals in a repeating process.
- 100 Ways to Conserve Water: Learn all the ways you can help to conserve water!