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Interactive Timeline - Social Studies for grades 3-5

Students will learn about the people who have gone to Antarctica and their reasons for going to the continent.

Learning Objective: Students will be able to collect, research, and synthesize historical facts and create a dramatic presentation that highlights their understanding of Antarctic exploration.

1. Divide the class into up to several groups. Each group is responsible for conducting research on a particular time period in Antarctica's history. Possible group topics:
  •  Early exploration, 1700's
  •  Seal hunters, 1784-1822
  •  Search for the South magnetic Pole
  •  Whale hunters
  •  Exploration for scientific purposes and national recognition late 1800's to early 1900's
  •  Whalers return
  •  Mechanized Exploration
  •  Territorial Claims
  •  Establishment of permanent bases
Teacher Note: Depending on the reading level of your students, you may need to work individually with each group to complete the research section of this activity. Some good Web sites to begin researching include
www.coolantarctica.com/%20fact%20file/History/exploration%20and%20history.htm or www.antarcticaonline.com//history/history.htm#Anchor_intro

2. After the research has been completed, ask each group to write a brief skit that captures the events of the time period they researched. As a class, write a part for a narrator. Stage the interactive timeline performance of the skits. If possible, invite other classes or community members to view the performance. You may also want to create a videotape.

Learning Log Entry: Record the historic events in your Antarctic Learning Log.