On Wednesday 7thNovember, 86 children and their teachers from Tirlebrook, St John’s and Lydbrook Primary Schools came together at the Tom Roberts Adventure Centre, for one of our Arctic Adventure and Climate Change days.

The children rotated around three, very different sessions. Emma Espley led ‘Getting hands on with geography!’ which comprised five, short activities. The children looked at the population of the Arctic and where people live within the region; how people earn a living and what activities tourists can do; how climate change is affecting the region; and rounded off by building an igloo out of sugar cubes!

Emily Hastings from Acting Up! (http://www.actinguptheatre.co.uk/) delivered a drama-themed session, using imaginative thinking to enable the children to visualise the Arctic, including its colours, wildlife, weather/climate and landscape. The children also became explorers and talked about what they were doing in order to survive the harsh, Arctic conditions. Emily introduced the concept of freeze frames and pupils created organic scenes through still images within their small groups. Emily then split the class into three large groups, giving each a topic linked to climate change to discuss and present back to everyone.  

Our Wicked Weather Watch session focused on the wildlife and landscapes found within the Arctic – there’s more to the region than ice and polar bears! Challenging the children to think through a series of true or false questions, we looked at three key landscapes (polar desert, tundra and taiga) and the impact of climate change on each and the wildlife that lives there. The children then had time to get creative and draw their favourite Arctic animal or landscape.

An extended lunch was built into the day, so that all groups had an opportunity to climb inside a tent and handle some of the equipment taken on recent expeditions to the Arctic. Finally, a presentation was given by Digby Rawlins, who discussed his first-hand experiences of the Arctic (he has made trips to both Greenland and Svalbard, Norway), shared media footage from his travels, as well as giving pupils and teachers time to ask any burning questions that they had. 

The day was enjoyed by all, with some great feedback from teachers and pupils alike:

‘The class loved the Arctic climate change talk – a brilliant mix of information, questions and photos.’

‘Geography with Emma – children learnt skills and new facts.’

‘Superb sessions – thank you.’