We are saying farewell to the Arctic today, finishing up a few last fun activities (a snow morphing arctic adventure and arctic animal track scavenger hunt) before moving on next week, and I think I am going to be sad. We had such a good time with this theme this month! It was a great way to start the year.
The past two weeks we learned about arctic foxes (my favorite), harp seals, beluga whales, walruses, and arctic wolves, which I timed to learn about on the night of the full wolf moon. We had quite a bit of fun with the art projects – the little salt dough clay seal turned out as cute as the narwhal did, the walrus was a fun thrown together project, and the fox was fun but sort of messy, which everyone hated. My mom and my niece do the same theme with us every month, which makes it more fun honestly. We have video chats once a week where the kids can show off their projects and work to each other and it is just a nice end to the week. Then they digress into showing off their toys and then being silly, but that is ok – they miss playing with each other!
We did a small “research” project, kindergarten style, at the end of the month, where each kid picked their favorite animal that we had studied and did a special paper on that animal, to kind of check what they remembered, etc. My niece chose the harp seal as her favorite, and Wyatt picked the narwhal, our very first animal that we did. He loved the arctic animal yoga we did this month too – I have to admit I liked the arctic hare pose and the beluga whale breathing as well. Lol. He will randomly and spontaneously do the narwhal pose, and it is so cute to hear him say it. Dinogirl’s favorite switched throughout the month, from narwhal to fox to seal, before settling on seal- Wyatt was pretty sold on either narwhal or polar bears the entire month. It was also a good month for speech for us, with a few really great breakthroughs.
We read quite a few books, but both kids loved the book Arctic White, and I agree it is a wonderful one. In the book, the girl and her grandfather live in an igloo, so we discussed how an igloo is a traditional home that is not really a home type anymore, that the Indigenous People of the arctic live in permanent, modern housing like Molly of Denali does. We did talk about igloos and their construction which was interesting, I learned a new word, catenary, which is the curve that an igloo forms – not a half circle shape. The kids thought a house made of snow was really cool, no pun intended. We tried our hand at building igloos out of sugar cubes. Wyatt and I were not successful, despite much trying…
My mom and niece were better engineers – my mom figured out a support system. She is much better at that sort of thing than I am.
We were planning on finishing up our unit by taking a field trip to the zoo to see the polar bears and wolves and the arctic fox but coincidentally, arctic air moved into the area and it is so cold! I didn’t feel comfortable taking Wyatt out into it, so I made new reservations for Valentines Day. We are also supposed to get a snowstorm tonight – the perfect entrance for our month long unit on snow and snowmen and all things winter!
Note: If printables include penguins, save those for a separate unit, as they live in the South Pole, not North
(Contains Amazon Affiliate Links)
In Arctic Waters || Baby Beluga || Arctic White
Videos, Art, Experiments and Extras:
Build animal dens out of mini marshmallows
Wild Kratt’s episodes: Horn and Tusk Power, Baby Tooth
Welcome to the Ice House Read Aloud
Canadian Encyclopedia “Igloos”
7 thoughts on “Homeschool: The Arctic Weeks 3 & 4”
That was a fun theme. Great shot of Wyatt with his Walrus. My great niece is lucky she got to visit ice castles.
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That is awesome!! I saw that Ice Castles thing on Instagram and it looked so fun!!!
Another great month of learning and exploring. Great photos, and I love that one of Wyatt with the narwhal.
Enjoy whatever adventures you have in February!
I get so excited when I see a new lesson plan and homeschool post. I loved teaching about the arctic animals. Thank you for all the great things you share. The igloo building would be quite a challenge for me. One year, I decided I would build an igloo out of gallon milk jugs in the library. Saved and saved milk jugs forever. But when I tried to stick them together with hot glue, they didn’t stick. Had to recycle all of those milk jugs!!
Did you see the latest Caldecott winning book is about water? Might be good for a lesson about the water cycle. I want to check out the Arctic White book. It sounds like a great story.
I have been called to sub in the library at a school where a subbed for almost a year once before. Wish Covid would go away so I could accept the job without reservation. Not sure what to do about taking the position. But would enjoy being back among babies and books.
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Oh my gosh!!! I wonder why they didn’t stick! How disappointing! We were obviously not good at igloo building either though. I guess milk jugs and sugar are just not great building materials. LOL.
I saw that book!! And Wyatt actually accidentally bought it when using my kindle lol. I haven’t read it to him yet though. I need to, it looks amazing.
We loved Arctic White. Such a good simple story.
Oh that would be so nice wouldn’t it! To go back? Ugh COVID. I worked as a library para for 10 years, and then when our district eliminated the librarian position and class (which was sad, she was like my best buddy!) I ended up doing all of the library stuff all on my own. Not teaching of course, but ordering and all the processing and barcodes. It was a crazy thing. I left when I had Wyatt but I miss all the kiddos and the books. I loved that job so much. 🙂
What a fun unit.
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