The Four Seasons
Parts of the earth about half-way from the Poles and the Equator, either South or North, usually experience four seasons. A season is a period of the year which has different temperatures, weather patterns and changes in nature from the other periods. Seasons occur because while the Earth rotates around the sun each year, it is tilted on its axis. One half, called a hemisphere, leans toward the Sun, and one half leans away. Regions near the equator or the Poles don't have changes in season.
The Northern Hemisphere leans toward the sun for one half of the year, resulting in more sunlight and warmer weather. For the other half of the year, the Northern Hemisphere is tilted away from the sun, resulting in less intense sunlight and cooler weather. While the Northern Hemisphere is enjoying warm weather, the Southern Hemisphere is tilted away from the sun and experiencing cooler weather.
The four seasons are called Fall (sometimes called Autumn), Winter, Spring and Summer. The months of September, October and November are usually considered Fall months. December, January and February are considered Winter months. Spring includes March, April and May. Finally, June, July and August are summer months.
In the Fall, the weather is cool, crops are harvested, apples ripen and are picked. Leaves turn red, yellow and brown and then drop to the ground. School begins. Piles of raked leaves can be found in many places throughout regions with Fall season. Halloween is celebrated this time of the year, and pumpkins can be seen in some parts of the country. Animals begin to store up food for the winter. Some get ready to hibernate during the long, cold months of the winter.
The Winter months bring frost, very cold temperatures, snow and freezing rain. People like to ski, go snowmobiling, ice skate, go for sleigh or sled rides or build snowmen. Others like to sit inside in front of a warm fire. Usually, driving can be dangerous due to icy roads. Plants either are dead or not blooming again until spring. Some animals have trouble finding food. Many people celebrate Christmas by bringing an evergreen tree into their houses to decorate. The new year begins during the winter on January 1st.
Spring brings warmer temperatures and new growth on trees and plants. Beautiful flowers bloom. Sap runs in the maple trees, and maple farmers collect the sap to boil into maple syrup. Farmers plant seeds so that crops can be harvested in the Fall. People like to go for hikes in the warmer weather or play sports. Usually the Spring brings rain and wind also. The rain helps the new plants grow. Children have Easter egg hunts and fly kites.
Temperatures in Summer can be very hot. Thunderstorms occur frequently. Crops grow tall. People like to go fishing, swimming and camping. Independence Day is celebrated on July 4th with parades and fireworks. Children are out of school for a vacation. Many families travel.
In summary, the four seasons are created because the Earth is tilted on its axis as it rotates around the sun. During one half of the year, the Northern Hemisphere, the part of the earth north of the Equator, is tilted toward the sun and experiences warmer temperatures. During the other half of the year, the Northern Hemisphere is tilted away from the sun and temperatures are much colder.