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Gail Skroback Hennessey

What do you know about the Arctic? Did you know that no country OWNS the northern-most region of the Earth? Grab your thermo-clothing, gloves, scarf, hat, goggles and camera and let's explore the Arctic!

1. The smallest of the world's oceans is the Arctic Ocean. Name six countries which border the Arctic Ocean:____________________ ____________ ______________________________ Most of the Arctic Ocean is covered by ice. It was many years before people realized there was water under the ice! Who was the first explorer to cross the Arctic Ocean by boat?_____________Find the answers at this link:

2.The word "Arctic" originates from a Greek word "arktikos" meaning:__________This is because the constellation Ursa Major is located in the northern sky. Did you know that there aren't any trees in the Arctic? Some shrubs can reach heights of about 6ft tall! What do scientists say is the reason for the melting of the Arctic ice? ___________. What is the coldest temperature recorded at the Arctic?__________Find the answers at this link:

3. Did you know that there is actually a marathon race held at the Arctic? It is called the North Pole Marathon!It was organized by __________, the first person to run a marathon at both the South and North Poles.The very first North Pole Marathon was held in this year:_____ How many miles(kilometers) long is a marathon run?___________ Find the answers at this link:

4. The treeless and cold biome(region of the earth) of the Arctic is called thetundra.From which language does the word, "tundra" (meaning treeless or barren land) come?__________What is the name for the layer of ground below the topsoil that is always frozen?__________________ Some of the estimated 177 plants that call the tundra home are lichen, grasses and herbs. What are two characteristics of plants of the tundra that help absorb the sun's energy?__________ and_________ Why do animals of this biome have small tails and ears?________ Why do the animals have big feet?____________Find the answers

at this link:

The complete resources has 14 webquestions:

Did you Know?

  1. 1/5 of the world's fresh water comes from the Arctic.
  2. Didyou know that Antarctic has even colder temperatures than the Arctic? (-89.2C or -90.4F)

3. The melting of ALL of the ice at the Arctic would cause the water levels to rise about 24 ft. If all the ice from Antarctica melted, scientists say it would cause the water level to rise 200 ft!

The complete resource has 6 Did You Know? facts.

Comprehension Questions:

1. What are some ways the bodies of animals, such as the polar bears and reindeer, help the animals deal with their environment? How do plants also exist in the cold environment?

2. What do scientists say is causing the melting of the Arctic? Do you know what is causing this to happen?

3. Give two facts about the biome called the "tundra".

4. What is the Midnight Sun? What is the Polar Night? 

5. What were two legends about the causes of the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis)? What actually causes the light show? What might be a legend you could say might have cause the Aurora Borealis?

There are 10 comprehension questions in the complete resource.

Teacher Page:

* Before doing the webquest, have students share any prior knowledge they may have about the Arctic.

* Have students in small groups work on the web quest. Regroup and discuss the web quest.

  • Have groups make 7 true or false questions to exchange with another group to answer as a review.

* Have students close the webquest and on a piece of paper, write 7 specific facts they remember from the webquest.

Extension Activities:

1. Would you stay in an ice Hotel? Why, why not?

2. Today, much of the indigenous people of the Arctic no longer live in their traditional cultural areas. How is this a positive change? How is this a negative change? Write a paragraph explaining your thoughts.

3. Read these two short passages: and Draw and illustrate a picture and write 4 facts learned about the Inuits.

There are 8 extension activities:

Click here for the complete resource:The Arctic: A Webquest!

Additional Resources of Interest:

1.Try this webquest on Polar Bear:

2. Learn about Antarctica:

Link for teachers:

There are 11 links for teachers in the complete resource.

A key is also provided for the web quest and comprehension questions.

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Note:Illustrations from