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Simple activities to make your Arctic unit come to life!
27 Dec, 2015. 6 Comments. . Posted By: Kristen Smith

My students wanted to know why such massive, beautiful creatures were endangered. To explain this, they needed to understand a bit about global warming and how the sea ice is melting. To do this, we read a few books on polar bears. Our favorite was this one:

polar bears

(http://amzn.to/1m7H6Hk)

We also watched a few parts of these videos:


My class’ favorite video was this one:

After learning about the sea ice melting, we completed an easy experiment to show my students how ice melts.

For this experiment I froze water in our class set of test tubes and then had my students pour salt on top of the ice. Then they added drops of colored water to the top and watched how the ice cracked and melted.

Hands-on Arctic experiment that shows how quickly ice melts

Within moments the cracks started and my students began discussing the impact the salt was having on the ice. We discussed how the salt was making the temperature of the ice rise and was causing it to melt. We talked about how this is kind of what is happening with global warming.

Hands-on Arctic experiment that shows how quickly ice melts Hands-on Arctic experiment that shows how quickly ice melts

My students asked to use our lightbulbs to watch the effects better. This was a great addition to the experiment!

Hands-on Arctic experiment that shows how quickly ice meltsHands-on Arctic experiment that shows how quickly ice melts

In addition to all of the fun science activities we completed during this study, we also created the most beautiful paintings of the Northern Lights. Click on to read how to create stunning paintings of the Northern Lights!

Painting the Northern Lights

6 Comments
  1. Hi Kristen, thank you for your great posts. Could you please explain what crisco is?
    Thanks and Happy New Year!
    Rebecca

    • He Rebecca! I’m so glad you like these posts! Crisco is vegetable shortening. You can get it (I’m pretty sure) in the baking section of your grocery store.

  2. Kim -

    Your posts are amazing, and are so engaging and easy to take right into the classroom. Thank you!

  3. I would like to do this craft for a summer school this summer – I am curious if the water paint that you linked to would be enough to make 60 crafts?

    Thanks!

    • I would probably purchase two sets to complete 60 crafts. I have had my bottles for three years now but I use it sparingly and pour every last drop back into the bottles when we are finished using them. I would hate for you to run out! It’s great paint so if you end up with extra, I’m sure you can use it again!! 🙂

  4. Hey! Love this watercolor painting so much. What type of paper did you use? Thank you!

6 Comments

  • Hi Kristen, thank you for your great posts. Could you please explain what crisco is?
    Thanks and Happy New Year!
    Rebecca

    • He Rebecca! I’m so glad you like these posts! Crisco is vegetable shortening. You can get it (I’m pretty sure) in the baking section of your grocery store.

  • Kim -

    Your posts are amazing, and are so engaging and easy to take right into the classroom. Thank you!

  • I would like to do this craft for a summer school this summer – I am curious if the water paint that you linked to would be enough to make 60 crafts?

    Thanks!

    • I would probably purchase two sets to complete 60 crafts. I have had my bottles for three years now but I use it sparingly and pour every last drop back into the bottles when we are finished using them. I would hate for you to run out! It’s great paint so if you end up with extra, I’m sure you can use it again!! 🙂

  • Hey! Love this watercolor painting so much. What type of paper did you use? Thank you!

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