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☰ Weston Green’s Arctic Research Project Skype Session

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Weston Green’s Arctic Research Project Skype Session

Posted on: 09 May 2014 by Weston Green School | Category: Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2, Year 1

Pupils in 1W, together with representatives from each class in KS1 and KS2 were lucky enough to have the opportunity to question a scientist, Jamie, currently working in the Arctic about his work and life in the region.

The children had thought of a wide variety of questions to ask, including:

Question: “How do you cope with the cold?”

Answer: “By wearing lots of layers and drinking hot tea. On this trip the temperature is not very cold, only about -5 to -12 degrees, but on previous trips it has been as cold as -65 degrees which is much harder to cope with. The scientists have no need for a freezer to store their food!”

Jamie was also asked how he knows when it is day and night, as currently in the Arctic it does not get dark and won’t again until the end of August. He replied that watches are useful, but also following the sun as it moves around the sky in a loop during each 24 hour period.

Another question was asked about coping with polar bears – Jamie said that polar bears are most dangerous when asleep if woken suddenly, so if out on trips, the scientists always carry a flare gun and a rifle, plus they sing a song to wake any polar bears instead of stumbling across them.

Jamie was also asked if he could see the Northern Lights. He explained that because at the moment it is spring and summer it is light all day. He said that in August they would be able to see them as the sun will have gone by then.

There were also questions about the thickness of the ice and how quickly it is melting: Jamie said that the ice does seem to melt earlier in the year than it used to and that a thickness of 1.5m is needed to camp on in order to feel safe!

We are very grateful to Mrs Morrison for arranging this fantastic opportunity for the pupils and also to Jamie for engaging with the children so well and coping admirably with questions on a wide variety of topics. The children who took part listened very well to each other and to Jamie and learnt a great deal from the experience – not least, what the weather was like on Svalbard Island north of Norway, when Jamie turned the webcam round to show the children the view from the window! A very exciting morning for everyone involved!

You can read a recount of the Arctic Interview from Jessica in Year 5here.

Watch a video of Jamie, the Arctic explorer, being interviewed by pupils at Weston Green:

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