Continent Study: Antarctica – Resources for Antarctic and Arctic Circle


I’ve been a bit remiss about geographical studies in our little home school.  We have covered bits and pieces alongside our history but I haven’t spend inordinate amount of hours on it.  This year, being an all or nothing kind of a person, I intend to go a bit mad by covering a heap of geography whilst studying the Tudor Explorers.  In addition I will also be roping the older ones into the little girls continent studies.

I had thought to cover both polar regions to go along with the little ones Five in a Row (FIAR) studies, but as I was planning it I found some incredible resources and I personally found the continent of Antarctica so very interesting I made the decision to add a whole new unit study to our already completely packed schedule.  Nuts, right?

We will carry out our continent studies every other Wednesday afternoon for just one hour.  This means there won’t be much time to study this unit for the older ones.  The younger ones will have extra study time tied in with their FIAR studies and I will also use up some of our morning meeting time for a read aloud linked to Antarctica.

I have a few books which the older ones can flick through.  They are more suited to the younger set but as I thoroughly enjoyed reading them and learnt lots of new things, I thought the older ones would probably gain something from reading them also.  The left set are a few picture books, the right set contain some of A6’s reading books for this term:

Ribbet collageantartica

In addition to the picture books I have a couple of books especially for the older children and two dvds for all the children to watch about penguins, one of the few animals hardy enough to live in the Antarctica all year round:

Ribbet collageantarctica2

I have also downloaded and printed off some magazines from this site.  I have printed the easier ones for my younger two and the harder ones for my older three:

Ribbet collageantarctica3

To make it all very exciting, I have found some stamps from the Antarctica, which I intend to stick on an envelope, pop in the magazines and write each child’s name and address on them.  Each Wednesday, my mum has kindly agreed to post them through the door at around the same time as the post man (she lives next door).  Receiving their own mail through the post is always very exciting, so I am hoping the idea of Antartica Magazines arriving form Antartica will very much float their boat and create a great deal of excitement towards their new study.  I have also photocopied old editions of The South Pole Times written in the 1930’s, just for a bit of added extra fun:


The children will also be making a dough map of Antarctica, a diorama, writing an essay comparing the north and south polar regions, researching what is going on in Antarctica right now, scientifically speaking and presenting the information in whatever way they wish, using this report to guide them:


And last but not least we will be dipping our toes into experimenting with a bit of Readers’ Theatre.  I have downloaded a play written about the Antartica, where the children take on the parts of the animals which live there:

Ribbet collageantartica4

If we have time (ahem) I’m going to get the children to carry out some planning for the youngest ever expedition to Antarctica!  I got this idea from this website which has many links to help them out.

Hopefully this will be an interesting study into the continent which claims to be untouched by man.