There is no child who did not wonder at the permanently changing shapes of the clouds, or who was not charmed by the gentle flow of a mountain spring. The sea and the waves fascinated also many children on their path to become adults and sometimes continued along their whole life. Fluid mechanics is an important part of our daily life, the examples from our regular activity being countless (we breathe, we wash, it rains etc.), bringing contributions in most of the STEM domains. The students need to practically understand the physics behind these complex phenomena.

The educational package dedicated to secondary school students proposes to investigate the relation between the direction and speed of the wind and wave formation. We review concepts related to wind characteristics with an emphasis on the most relevant factors for the generation of waves. A detailed characterization of wind waves adapted to the level of study (lower or upper secondary schools) is provided. In the upper secondary school, students study notions on mechanical oscillations, allowing a more detailed investigation of wind waves features.

Using free online data available on several forecast websites, the lower and upper secondary students will have to make predictions and as a subsequent step, compare their prediction with real data, on the formation and characteristics of the wind waves, such as the wave height in relation with the wind properties, the propagation direction of the wave front taking into account besides the wind, also the specific geographical characteristics, marine currents etc. For a start, the wind waves’ formation on the Romanian Black Sea Coast will be analysed.


Wind and Waves