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At-Home Activities: Polar Quest - Find New Creatures

November 9-13

In-Class Workshop Activities

  1. Craft – Inuit Soapstone Carving

  2. Key Points – Polar Creatures

  3. Collaborative – Scientific Classification

  4. Language Arts – Polar Bear Meets Penguin Story

  5. Math/Logic – Great Backyard Bird Count

  6. Prepare for Adventure – Pet Care

  7. Big Activity – Polar Insulation Experiment

  8. Movement - Dog Sled

At-Home Activities

See a suggested week schedule at


• Various fiction and non-fiction books that relate to the poles

• journal or writing paper

• movie or storybook

• tangrams (you can print and cut out from the included file.)

• two dice

• calculator

• 200 counters such as dry beans

• number cards and instructions cards (print four sets and cut them apart)

• paper lunch bags

H09 tangrams and number cards
Download PDF • 58KB


Various fiction and non-fiction books that relate to the poles



“Our wings serve as flippers that carry us across the ocean; not in the sky!

Why, us penguins have so much fun time in the water, we don't even want to fly!”

– Jasmine Martin

There's a Polar Bear

In our Frigidaire--

He likes it 'cause it's cold in there.

With his seat in the meat

And his face in the fish

And his big hairy paws

In the buttery dish,

He's nibbling the noodles,

And munching the rice,

He's slurping the soda,

He's licking the ice.

And he lets out a roar

If you open the door.

And it gives me a scare

To know he's in there--

That Polary Bear

In our Fridgitydaire.”

― Shel Silverstein

Language arts lesson

Stories are often written with a dramatic structure that includes:

1. exposition - introduces background events and characters

2. rising action - a series of events that create suspense in the narrative

3. climax - the part of the story where the suspense reaches its highest part

4. falling action - the main conflict starts to resolve

5. resolution - the conclusion of the story where questions are answered and loose ends are tied up

See more:

Writing Activity

Watch the movie “Iron Will.” Identify the dynamic structure in the story. You could use a different movie or a storybook. Use the dynamic structure to write a story about your favorite polar animal.


Write a letter to your pet.


Math Concept

We use the symbols “>” and “<” to compare values of numbers. For example,

10 > 8 means that ten is greater than eight.

6 < 10 means that six is less than ten.

4 < 9 means that four is less than nine.

96 > 36 means that ninety six is greater than thirty six.

Watch this video to learn how to compare large numbers:

Math Project

Read about some of the world’s longest animal migrations:

Compare the migrations of five or more different animals. Write out the distance comparisons using “>” and “<”.

Math Concept

Invented in China approximately 200 years ago, a tangram is a two-dimensional re-arrangement puzzle created by cutting a square into seven pieces -- seven geometric shapes called "tans." For more about tangrams, go here:

Math Project

Assemble tangrams into the shapes of polar animals.

Mental math

Play an estimation game with two dice. See the chart below to know the value of each dice side. Take turns rolling the dice, adding the corresponding numbers together in your head. For example, if a student rolls six and 3, the equation is 497 + 640. Add the numbers in your head. You get a point if your answer is within five numbers. You can use a calculator to verify the answer. You can change the dice numbers to make this exercise harder or easier.

Math games

Place 200 counters in the center of the table. Put the number cards and the instruction cards cards face down on the table. To play, draw two number cards and one instruction card. If you get add on your instruction you will add together the two numbers you got and take that number of counters. If the instruction card says subtract, you will subtract the smaller number from the larger number and take that number of counters. If you get double, you will double one of the numbers you drew and collect that number of counters. If you get lose turn, you don’t get any counters this turn. Take turns, each taking counters from the same pile of counters. When the pile is depleted, the player with the most counters wins.


Research and Report

Make a poster of a tundra animal. Around the edges, write basic facts and interesting details about your animal.

Themed Fireworks Project

Make paper bag puppets of tundra animals. Write a script of a tundra adventure for the animal characters. Perform the story as a puppet show.

6-week project

  1. Use the information you collected last week to start creating your written report. Use a mind map to organize your findings. Put the report topic in the center of your paper, with related information branching out from there.

  2. Make an outline. Using the mind map as a guide, put the information into an order that would make sense for a written report.

  3. Work on your display.


Visit an animal shelter.

Other Ideas

  1. Make some Inuit crafts:

  2. Memorize the divisions of scientific classification: kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, species. List the scientific classification of five different polar animals.

  3. Do some Iditarod activities:

  4. Do an Antartica food chain activity:

  5. Learn more about the tundra:

  6. Write a short essay about what people think about animal extinctions. Are humans to blame? What can and should we do to prevent further extinctions? Does everyone agree on the answers to these questions?

  7. Create a collage of plants, animals and geological features of the tundra.

  8. Choose a tundra animal to create a digital slide show about. Create several slides describing its physical characteristics, food, social structure, home, predators, adaptations, etc.

  9. Turn a corner of you home into a tundra.

  10. What kinds of birds do you see from home? Choose one of these birds and observe how many of this kind of bird you can see in one day.

  11. Dogsledding 101:

  12. Create a travel brochure for a tundra area. Include information about things such as plants, animals, interesting places, events to see (such as the aurora Borealis), excursions and activities, where to stay, what to bring, and survival tips.

Go to to find out more about field trips, in-person classes, online classes, and at-home materials.


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