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How does rain come about?

The formation of rain is a complex phenomenon. There are already a fewExperiments for childrenthat explain the topic clearly. We want to provide you with background information so that you can explain the big drops from heaven to your child. By the way, you can find more about our sky in the sectionastronomy. But now to the question: How does rain come about?

What is rain Creation for kids explained

The water cycle plays an important role in the formation of rain: water from seas, lakes, rivers, but also plants evaporates when it is hot. Evaporation can be triggered, for example, by solar radiation. This gaseous, invisible water then spreads high in the air. It gets so cold there that the condensed water turns into small water droplets again. These form a cloud.

If too much water collects in the cloud, it falls back to our earth. Then it sinksAir pressure. That hasUniversity of Frankfurt also examined in more detail. If you are interested in topics like this, take a look at our offerNatural sciences purely. By the way, it mostly rains here at temperatures above zero degrees Celsius. More on this for the Preschool You will receive prepared and more detailed insights into physical processes in the courseStudy physics. You can also use the knowledge you have acquired in our course Tuition elementary school expand. By the way, we take care of it Homeschooling for not missing anything in the future.

Formation of rain: what types are there?

Hopefully you have already internalized that the formation of rain is a cycle. Much of it also comes withchemistry to do. However, the liquid precipitation can look very different. Here we explain to you the differences (cf. Staguhn, 2008).

Heavy rain

Heavy rain means that there are particularly heavy rain showers. That can be pretty dangerous. Often there is another onethunderstorm to. It then rains a lot in a short time, so that the water cannot seep into the ground and floods occur. In addition, thelightning Cause damage. Incidentally, theUniversity of Siegen started in 2016.

continuous rain

If it rains continuously for hours, days or even weeks, we speak of continuous rain. The raindrops then fall for a long time and also very strongly as large, thick drops from the sky. In the course you will find out what this can mean for our environmentBiology for children.

Did you know?

It rains a lot on the island of Kauai, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Your mountain region is one of the rainiest spots in theearth. An average of 11,687 liters of rain fall there per year and square meter. That is as much water as in about 100 full bathtubs! By the way, there are more practical comparisons at Children's University.


If it rains only very small drops, then we speak of drizzle. Most of the time we go out anyway and are not as deterred as with continuous or heavy rain. These fine raindrops fall from the "warm" clouds, ie those that are not so high in the air.


Imagine that you are standing on a bridge and it suddenly starts to rain heavily. The people you see walking in the field from the bridge don't seem to notice anything. This is called downpour. It occurs in a limited area, usually less than a square kilometer, for a short time and is unpredictable. Incidentally, precipitation can also be measured, which universities often do, for example theUniversity of Cologne.

Table 1: Formation of rain - types

How does warm rain and how does freezing rain come about?

When it comes to the development of rain, one can differentiate between warm and freezing rain. Far up in the air, a cloud consists not only of water droplets, but also of ice crystals that suck in the water. It freezes on them and together they grow so that they become toosnow or grains of ice. At some point they become too heavy and fall down from the cloud. As soon as they come into warmer areas of the air, they melt and arrive at us as thick raindrops.

However, if it is cold on the way down, the drops will turn into snowflakes orhail (see Hermann, 2010). But there are also clouds in which there are no ice crystals, but only water droplets. In these “warm” clouds the small water droplets unite, become larger and heavier and finally fall out of the cloud as raindrops (cf. Schwanke, 2013).

What do we need him for?

If there was no generation of rain, our earth would not exist as it is. Rainwater supplies plants and animals with essential fluids. In addition, heatthunderor storms do not exist without the liquid precipitation. It is therefore part of a recurring cycle that is vital for plants, animals and us humans. If you still have questions on this topic, then take a look at Homework assistance past.

How does acid rain come about? Explained for children

If the water is acidic when it rains, it does not mean that the raindrops taste like lemon, but that they contain acid. This acid dissolves solid substances such as lime. Therefore, you will often resort to cleaning agents with citric acid to descale a tap.

Acid rain can be quite aggressive: it breaks down entire structures within decades. Most of the time this happens through pollutants such as nitric oxide, nitrogen dioxide or sulfur oxide. Through thewind the pollutants mix with the raindrops and fall back on our earth. There they leave serious damage, including to trees and plants (see Farndon, 2009). If you need a chemical explanation, it canUniversity of Beyreuth help out.

How is our environment changing?

We have been talking about climate change for a number of years. This also influences the development of rain. The temperature on our earth is getting higher and higher, for example due to too much CO2 emissions. As a result, more water evaporates and the air absorbs more water. When it gets hotter, it comes to heavy rain or torrential rain.

AlsoStorm there can be more often. This leads to extreme weather conditions. This is very difficult not only for us, but also for the flora and fauna. In addition, the acid precipitation is polluted by pollutants and also contributes to the destruction of our environment. In order to take the fear of these topics from your protégé, it is important to deal with them childcare to discuss child-friendly.

Formation of rain to try out

You can test for yourself how rain develops with a small rain experiment. The evaporation of the water from the earth happens in a similar way to tea making. A liquid substance (water) becomes a gaseous substance (steam). This in turn changes back into a liquid, i.e. water droplet. This is called condensation. These processes depend on the temperature, regardless of whether it is when rain occurs on the earth or when making tea.

Although the formation of rain is a complex phenomenon that is related to many different factors, it is very exciting for children. Hence, it is important to get in touch with ourWeather to deal with. If we deal with our earth, we can understand our environment better.


Farndon, John (2009):Weather. Munich.

Hermann, Heike (2010): The weather. Nuremberg.

Schwanke, Carsten (2013): Weather. Sun, wind and downpour. Nuremberg.

Staguhn, Gerhard (2008): Sun, wind and rain - a weather science in times of climate change, Munich.

FAQs on the subject of rain

What do the drops look like when it rains?

When it rains, most raindrops are simply round, like a circle.

What does a rainbow have to do with the formation of rain?

When it rains and at the same time theSun then we see a rainbow.

Can frogs predict the occurrence of rain?

Yes! Frogs mostly come out when the air is humid. When it rains, it does. So they predict the rain formation through their behavior.

Are there places where there is no rain?

Yes! When the rain clouds are kept away from the mountains, like in deserts, it rarely rains.

At what altitude does rain occur?

This can happen up to 15km high in the air!