We will be celebrating March Polar Week from 15th - 19th March 2010. This week will be an opportunity for researchers, educators, early career scientists, and students from across the globe to celebrate the partnerships, outreach, and scientific outcomes IPY has enabled regionally, nationally and internationally. It will also provide the IPY community with a chance to generate excitement as they prepare for the IPY Oslo Science Conference June 8-12, 2010. We plan activities, lecture series, virtual balloon launches and more during this week so stay tuned!
Although most of us will never encounter sea ice or permafrost, see mountain glaciers, or meet a free-living penguin, we can recognize the impacts of polar changes on our global systems, on our weather and climate, and on our neighbors in many parts of the world. This Polar Week will provide you with the opportunity to explore the many changes in polar regions.
Stories from various events from across the globe have been submitted with some wonderful pictures. Please check out our Polar Week Story page to read about some inspiring Polar Week activities.
Download the March Polar Week flyer and try some of these fun activities in your classroom. Don't forget to launch a virtual balloon to show your participation in this Polar Week! These activities are also list below.
Flyer in Different Languages:
- Contribute to a worldwide public lecture series: Show your polar enthusiasm by organizing a presentation about polar environments for your local Rotary, 4-H, Boy Scout/ Girl Scout troop, church group, school association, city council, university, or wherever your community gathers! View the list of March 2010 Polar Week Lectures here.
- Watch real-time web-streaming of a wide range of Arctic science from the State of the Arctic Conference (16 to 19 March 2010). Find the program and follow the presentations at http://soa.arcus.org/program.
- A Spin On Ozone: Try this activity to learn about the polar vortex and what effect it has on destruction of the ozone layer above Antarctica. Do the same processes occur in the Arctic? Thanks to Tamsin Gray for this activity.
- Penguin Reunion: Have you ever wondered how penguin parents and chicks manage to find each other in large loud colonies? Try this fun activity to see how penguins reunite in harsh Antarctic conditions. Thanks to Louise Huffman and Nancy Pearson for this activity.
- When Ice Melts...: What happens to sea level when icebergs and sea-ice melt? What happens when ice sheets and ice caps melt? Discover causes and consequences of sea level rise. Thanks to Louise Huffman, Isabelle DuFour and Sandy Zicus for this activity.
- Up The Food Chain - Pollution In The Arctic: Learn about bioaccumulation, bioconcentration, biomagnification and global distillation. Investigate how contaminants accumulate within an ecosystem. What impacts do these contaminants have on the environment and on human health in the Arctic? Thanks to Elizabeth Hodges Snyder and Nancy Nix for this activity.
Stories from various events from across the globe have been submitted with wonderful pictures. Please check out our Polar Week Story page to read about some inspiring Polar Week activities.
CKLB Aboriginal radio station in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories hosts an International Polar Year Radio Programme called "The Ends of the Earth". On Monday 15th March, Ends of the Earth is going to rebroadcast highlights of a very special Polar Ocean's Day show from March 2009. During the show, the programme linked up with physicist Rebecca Batchelor in Eureka, Nunavut and Alex Gough at New Zealand's Scott Base research station in the Antarctic with students in the Northwest Territories, the Yukon and even Vancouver, BC.
Tune in to hear the kids ask amazing, complex questions about the effects of climate change on sea ice, oils spills and gravity.
The show will be posted as a podcast at http://www.ncsnwt.com/audiolibrary.html. Type Ends of the Earth in the Search Database (ignore the requests for dates) - click on Show 60, March 15.
Portugal and Zambia
On Tuesday 16th March, Jose Xavier, a marine biologist from Portugal will talk to Lucky Musonda and his students from Lusaka, Zambia, on the importance of the Polar Regions. Having recently returned from Antarctica, Jose will discuss the challenges scientists face working in these extreme environments. Watch this space for a story and pictures from this exciting connection!
On Friday 19th March, students from Brazil, from Arviat, Nunavut and from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia will be discussing the importance of the polar regions and exchanging information on changes they have seen in their country in relation to climate change. On the call, they will also be joined by an Antarctic marine biologist and an Inuvialuit Elder.
International Public Lecture Series - find out what's happening in your region throughout March Polar Week! A list of events can be found here, including events in Germany, Norway, New Zealand, Portugal and Sweden.
Access Live Webstreaming from the State of the Arctic Conference!
Dates: 16-19 March 2010, starting from 1230 UTC (0830 EDT) at http://soa.arcus.org/streaming
The State of the Arctic Conference (http://soa.arcus.org), 16-19 March 2010, is an international science conference focused on understanding the arctic system, arctic change, it's connections to the Earth system, and translating research into solutions to environmental change.
The conference will be webstreamed to allow virtual participation for classrooms, the public, or others unable to attend the meeting but that are interested in learning more about arctic science, policy, peoples, and more.
Webstreaming includes real-time video and text chat which allows participants to make comments and ask questions.
Anyone is welcome to participate and webstreaming is free, however, we would appreciate it if you would register as a participant before or during the event when you get to the webstreaming site.
Conference webstreaming will be available beginning at 1230 UTC (0830 EDT) on Tuesday, 16 March at: http://soa.arcus.org/streaming. All plenary sessions will be streamed, and the full conference program is available online at: http://soa.arcus.org/program.
How to participate:
To participate fully, your computer should have the following:
1) Flash Player 10 (http://www.adobe.com/products/flashplayer/)
The activities for the March Poalr Week will be drawn from the content of Polar Science and Global Climate: An International Resource for Education & Outreach. This text will also serve as the foundation for the Teachers' Conference that will be an intrigal part of the IPY Oslo Science Conference in June 2010.
In an attempt to ensure efforts catalyzed by IPY will continue to inspire educators, students, and emerging polar researchers into the next generation a group of young, international, polar researchers, along with a group of enthusiastic educators, with a shared commitment to outreach and education, have created Polar Science and Global Climate. The Book is a response to continual requests from educators and scientists wishing to raise awareness about the importance of polar science during a time of rapid planet-wide climate change. The project has received support from a vide range of actors whom are a part of the IPY community, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), as well as the University of the Arctic, the United National Environment Program (UNEP), and the organizing committee for the flagship IPY Oslo Science Conference.
Other Links and Resources:
IPY Polar Books Collective: is an International Polar Year (IPY) project featuring books that reflect IPY themes. The collection includes books on polar science, accounts of polar research, and perspectives on the future of the Arctic and Antarctic in these times of rapid change. This includes storybooks and classroom activities, collections of tales and essays, and stunning photographs of polar wildlife, landscapes and people.
Global Outlook for Ice and Snow : As part of the above collection, this is a wonderful resource, prepared by UNEP and written by over 70 scientists from across the world. Click on the link to download lots of free resources.
Polar Day activities: A list of the previous Polar Day activities looking at Sea Ice, Ice Sheets, Our Changing Earth, Land and Life, People, Research above the Poles and Polar Oceans.
IPY Chart: The famous IPY honeycomb chart, listing all endorsed IPY projects.
Ozone Layer Information (Courtesy of UNEP) Includes video clips, images and education packs for primary and secondary schools.
Polar Discovery: (Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute) A wonderful resource looking at the differences between the Arctic and Antarctic.
Polar Education Resources: Provides an annotated list of internet resources for polar education. Thanks to Marti Canipe for this resource.
IPY ROAM Team, Antarctica.
The International Polar Year 2007-8 is a large international and interdisciplinary coordinated research effort focused on the polar regions. It is planned and sponsored by the International Council for Science (ICSU) and the World Meteorological Organizations (WMO). An estimated 50,000 participants from more than 60 countries are involved in research as diverse as anthropology and astronomy, health and history, and genomics and glaciology. This IPY was launched in March 2007, and will continue through early 2009. During this IPY, a regular sequence of International Polar Days will raise awareness and provide information about particular and timely aspects of the polar regions. These Polar Days include press releases, contacts to experts in several languages, activities for teachers, on-line community participation, web-conferencing events, and links to researchers in the Arctic and Antarctic. The complete schedule for past International Polar Days can be found at the following link.
Photos by permission from David Carlson.