Most students, regardless of their grade level, live “in the moment,” concerned only with factors and issues that have an immediate and direct impact on their lives. This is, to a large degree, understandable given the pressures, demands, responsibilities and constraints placed on students during their high school academic years. However, as teachers, we are required to not only
To begin the process of educating my students on my upcoming expedition to Antarctica, I introduced an activity entitled, “Questions about Antarctica…It’s What’s for Dinner.” In this assignment, small groups were asked to develop a list of 10 questions about anything - weather, clothing, wildlife, geography, geology, oceanography - related to Antarctica. Each question was worth up to 10 points
This lesson incorporates techniques and experimental designs used by researchers during the Southern Ocean Diatoms PolarTREC expedition and during post-expedition laboratory analysis. This guided inquiry lesson provides students the opportunity to explore photosynthesis and primary productivity using techniques to measure chlorophyll levels.
1. Use models to predict chlorophyll levels in the global oceans
In a “March Madness” game of survival of the fittest, will your microbe and its genes survive the test of changing conditions on Planet Earth and beyond? Students choose genes from a “toolbox” and pit their microbe against their classmates’, using critical thinking and argument writing to determine the microbe with the best chance of success. Based on PolarTREC
Understanding Physical and Chemical Parameters of Ocean Water Using CTD Profiles
A focus of the PolarTREC Southern Ocean Diatoms expedition was to collect water samples and physical profile data using oceanographic technology. Oceanographers rely on the real-time data transferred from the water column to the ship-based computers using a CTD sensor. The CTD measures conductivity (salinity), temperature and depth
Podcast of the Currently in Quincy interview related to PolarTREC. Cara Pekarcik sat down with Joe Catalano from Quincy Access Television to discuss her upcoming trip to Antarctica. The conversation touches on the specific research and the outreach component of the trip.
Quincy Access Television interview: PolarTREC teacher Cara Pekarcik talks with Joe Catalano on the Currently in Quincy Program. The conversation includes descriptions of the PolarTREC program, a description of the research project and day-to-day activities as well as a discussion about student and community outreach.
Analogs are used in science investigations to better understand systems we can’t access ourselves. In this lesson, students explore the Dry Valleys of Antarctica to better understand microbial communities on early Earth and what might have been possible on ancient Mars. Students will examine photographs, written descriptions, and artistic renderings of early Earth, the Dry Valley lakes, and
On 6 October 2014, Capital Public Radio in Sacramento, CA interviewed Dawn Sumner, Tyler Mackey and Lucy Coleman on connections between the research in Lake Joyce, Antarctica, and work by the Mars Curiosity rover. To listen to the interview, click here.