Showing posts with label Arctic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Arctic. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Satellite Observations of Arctic Change

Satellite imagery gives students, teachers, and professional researchers access to lots of information to analyze and interpret. Through timelapses of satellite imagery students can see how landscapes and seascapes change over time. Some timelapses of satellite imagery can be found in Google Earth. The National Snow & Ice Data Center at the University of Colorado Boulder also offers some excellent timelapses based on satellite observations.

Satellite Observations of Arctic Change is a set of eight timelapse maps. Each of the maps shows representations of changes based on information collected via satellite imagery. The maps included in the set are:

  • Frozen Ground
  • Sea Ice
  • Sea Ice Average
  • Water Vapor
  • Snow Cover
  • Vegetation
  • Near-surface Air Temperatures
  • Annual Minimum Exposed Snow and Ice
Applications for Education
Satellite Observations of Arctic Change could be a useful set of maps to use in a lesson on climate change. The maps alone don't explain what caused changes. The assignment for students to complete is to research the factors contributing to the changes. 

H/T to Maps Mania

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Frozen Planet - 7 Resources Beyond Discovery

I just watched the premiere of Discovery's new series Frozen Planet. In fact, I watched it at Discovery's headquarters then came back to my hotel room and watched part of it on television again. As I was watching Discovery had a pop-up on the television screen directing me to Discovery.com/frozenplanet for behind the scenes information and more. I was hoping to find a lot of useful classroom materials at that site, but I didn't. There are two neat infographics and a nice set of reference pages about the animals in each episode, but beyond that there isn't much more than video clips. So I decided to write a round-up some of the resources about the Arctic and Antarctic regions that I've found over the years.

The NASA Explorer channel on YouTube has some good videos about the climates of the Arctic and Antarctic regions. I've embedded Arctic Sea Ice 101 below.


ARMAP is a comprehensive resource of interactive, online maps of Arctic research. ARMAP's resources include files for use in Google Earth as well as ArcGIS explorer. You can also access 2D maps directly on the ARMAP website. ARMAP provides map layers and placemarks about a wide range of topics related to Arctic research. Before opening the general ARMAP map, visit the map gallery for a primer on the type of resources that can found on ARMAP. You should also check out the links section of ARMAP to visit the sources of much of the ARMAP content.

The Extreme Ice Survey offers a Google Earth file that displays the results of the Extreme Ice Survey. In this Google Earth file users can view glaciers, historical data about glaciers, and some video clips about shrinking glaciers. The Extreme Ice Survey website has high quality photos and time lapse videos from the surveyors. Embedded below is one of the videos from the Extreme Ice Survey.

EIS PROMO from Extreme Ice Survey on Vimeo.

Snag Learning hosts a couple of films about Antarctica. Terra Antarctica documents a six week kayaking exploration of Antarctica. The expedition was funded by National Geographic to document the effects of global warming and ecotourism on Antarctica and the world at large. Click here to watch the film and read the viewing/ discussion questions.
Watch more free documentaries

Snag Learning also makes the National Geographic film Emperors of Ice available for free viewing online. In Emperors of Ice viewers will dive under the ice with the penguins, learn how the Emperor Penguins select a mate and raise young, and interact with other penguins. Viewers will see how the Emperor Penguin is uniquely equipped to survive in the harsh environment of Antarctica. Finally, Emperors of Ice, produced by National Geographic, documents the potential effects of climate change on the Emperor Penguins of Antarctica. Watch a preview of Emperors of Ice below. You can find discussion questions here.

Watch more free documentaries


Frozen Planet: Explore the Polar Regions
 comes to us from The Open University. Frozen Planet: Explore the Polar Regions features an interactive display through which you can view the history of polar exploration and the science of the polar regions. The interactive display is created through the use of the Google Earth browser plug-in and a timeline. You can click along the timeline to see and read placemarks on Google Earth. You can browse through and click on a list of important places in both polar regions. For further investigation and analysis of the polar regions you can activate a number of Google Earth layers within the Frozen Planet display. The display also includes videos about each region although the playlist for the Antarctic region is much longer than the playlist for the Arctic region.

Explore.org offers some very nice footage of Polar Bears in their natural habitats. I've included one of the videos below.

Polar Bears International has some lesson plans for teaching about climate change, ecotourism, and conservation. You will also find links to a slideshow on Polar Bears and nice PDF about Polar Bears that contains an educational game.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Frozen Planet - An Interactive Exploration of the Poles

The Open University is a fantastic place to discover all kinds of valuable educational materials. From time to time I find myself getting lost in the content both on The Open University's website and The Open University's various YouTube channels. I was doing just that recently when I discovered Frozen Planet: Explore the Polar Regions.

Frozen Planet: Explore the Polar Regions features an interactive display through which you can view the history of polar exploration and the science of the polar regions. The interactive display is created through the use of the Google Earth browser plug-in and a timeline. You can click along the timeline to see and read placemarks on Google Earth. You can browse through and click on a list of important places in both polar regions. For further investigation and analysis of the polar regions you can activate a number of Google Earth layers within the Frozen Planet display. The display also includes videos about each region although the playlist for the Antarctic region is much longer than the playlist for the Arctic region.

Applications for Education
Frozen Planet: Explore the Polar Regions could be a good resource for both science and history teachers. In fact, Frozen Planet could be the basis for an interdisciplinary unit at the middle school or high school level.

Here's a fun fact that I learned through Frozen Planet: Explore the Polar Regions, five years after being the first person to stand on top of Mount Everest Sir Edmund Hillary was part of the team that completed the first complete crossing of Antarctica .

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Polar Bears International Educational Webcasts & More

Polar Bears International is a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness about polar bear populations and conservation of their habitat. One of the ways that PBI strives toward that goal is through educational outreach programs like Tundra Connections. Tundra Connections is a series of live webcasts from the Arctic tundra in which viewers have the opportunity to ask questions of polar bear and climate change scientists. The current webcast series has ended, but the webcast video archives can be viewed now.  

Thanks to Steve Dembo for the link on Twitter.

Applications for Education
In addition to the webcasts and webcast video archives, Polar Bears International offers free lesson plans. PBI's educational tools section (separate from lesson plans) offers handbooks, quizzes, posters, and many links to external sites related to the study of polar bears.

Here are some related items that may be of interest to you:
Snag Learning Film of the Week - Emperors of Ice
National Snow and Ice Data Center
ARMAP - Arctic Research Mapping Application

Thursday, September 23, 2010

One Week Left to Apply for PolarTREC 2011/2012

Are you an adventurous teacher? Do you prefer cold weather over hot weather? Do you blog or are you willing to start blogging? If you said yes to those questions, you might want to apply for PolarTREC's 2011/2012 field experiences. PolarTREC is looking for twelve teachers who are willing to spend a few weeks (possibly longer) on an Arctic or Antarctic research expedition in 2011 or 2012. Your responsibilities on the expedition may vary but at a minimum you'll be expected to share your experiences with your school and others through a variety of online and offline mediums.

The application deadline is October 1, 2010. You can find the application and FAQs here. Listen to an informational webinar recording about the application and expeditions here.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

ARMAP - Arctic Research Mapping Application

ARMAP is a comprehensive resource of interactive, online maps of Arctic research. ARMAP's resources include files for use in Google Earth as well as ArcGIS explorer. You can also access 2D maps directly on the ARMAP website. ARMAP provides map layers and placemarks about a wide range of topics related to Arctic research.

Before opening the general ARMAP map, visit the map gallery for a primer on the type of resources that can found on ARMAP. You should also check out the links section of ARMAP to visit the sources of much of the ARMAP content.

Applications for Education
I initially thought that ARMAP would just be useful for finding information about climate change and Artic science research, but in my review of the site I found that there are resources related to the social and political aspects of living in the Arctic Circle.

The content on ARMAP is best suited to high school and college students who have experience using Google Earth and or ArcGIS.

Here are some related resources that may be of interest to you:
Google Earth Links You Might Have Missed
View Glacier Melt in Google Earth
Geography Links You Might Have Missed

FREE National Geographic map with purchases $65+!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Go North - Explore the Arctic

Beginning on Monday, March 2 students in classrooms around the world can follow along on an Arctic dogsled expedition. Go North will give students the opportunity to learn about the Arctic through movies, photos, and audio updates from the Go North team. Students will also be able to map the trip and participate in question and answer segments. Go North is a project sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation, the University of Minnesota, and Best Buy.

Applications for Education
Following along with the Go North expedition is a great way for students to learn about the Arctic. To participate and follow along you do have to register your classroom in advance on the Go North website.

At the other end of the world, most major south pole expeditions are wrapping up or have wrapped up, but there are still some great expedition websites that your students can visit to learn about Antarctica. Check out Wired Antarctica and South Pole Quest to find good resources for teaching about Antarctica.