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Juniors explore the Polar regions

Posted: 11th February 2015 | Category: Year 1, Year 2

The Juniors have been really enthused by our exploration of the Polar regions, so much so that Oli Davis spent his weekend making a triptych showing polar animals in their environment, and Shackleton making his way on the ship Endurance. The children can readily distinguish between the two regions and understand how polar animals have adapted to their environment.

Yrs 1 and 2 have carried out a range of investigations, ranging from timing ice cubes melting, making ice marbles, role-playing adult penguins passing the chick (a marble!) safely from one to another and practising the penguin “huddle”.

On Thursday the challenge was to rescue a polar animal from the ice. To make it fair we measured the exact amount of water into each container, 175ml. Once we had agreed on what we wanted to achieve and which materials would assist us in the task, the children set to work, armed with paintbrushes, salt, sugar and water, painstakingly brushing the ice until they freed the animal. The sense of awe and wonderment was a joy to behold and led us on to discuss reversible and irreversible changes.

Our next venture is to test various materials to find out which is the best insulator to prevent our ice blocks from melting. The opportunities for learning are endless.
In Literacy we have been learning about Ernest Shackleton’s adventures to the Antarctic 1914 -1916 on the ship Endurance, with his talented crew. The fact that they had only black and white photography, along with the cumbersome size of the camera, the type of clothes they wore and the fact that they were not able instantly to communicate with the outside world, seemed unbelievable to our young learners of the C21st.  

 Click here to see photos of the children being explorers and building their own camps.

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