Grade Levels: K-3

In this set of activities adaptable for grades K-3, parents and educators will find ideas for teaching about Arctic habitats. These activities are designed to complement the BrainPOP Jr. Arctic Habitats topic page, which includes a movie, quizzes, online games, printable activities, and more.

Classroom Activities for Teaching Arctic Habitats

Coldest Day of the Year

What was the temperature of the coldest day of the year in your community? Have your students find out! You may also want students to find out the temperatures of the coldest days in other habitats, such as deserts and rainforests. How cold does it get where their cousins, grandparents, and family friends live? Then compare those temperatures with the coldest recorded day in the Arctic, −68 °C (−90 °F). This is a great opportunity to teach about negative numbers. We recommend using a number line to help students compare temperatures.

Arctic and Antarctic

After students have become familiar with Arctic habitats, explore the Antarctic together. Find similarities and differences between the two areas. What animals live in the Arctic? What animals live in the Antarctic? Your students should understand that penguins live around the South Pole and polar bears live around the North Pole. They do not share the same habitat. Who lives in the Antarctic? What are the differences between the Antarctic and the Arctic animals? Research on the Internet or at the library to learn more.

Family and Homeschool Activities for Arctic Habitats

Hide and Seek

Together with your child, explore how camouflage helps animals hide. Cut small shapes in white paper and different colored paper. Then hide the shapes in a room. If possible, hide the white shapes in white areas. You may want to tape white shapes to a white wall. Why might some animals change the colors of their coats in the winter? Why might other animals migrate during the winter?

Carbon Footprint

Take this opportunity to reduce carbon emissions in your home with your child. You can find ways to decrease your energy consumption to curb your contributions to global warming. Challenge your child to turn off lights when they are not in use and unplug rarely used appliances. You may also want to visit the grocery store together and discuss how some fruits and vegetables are shipped from thousands of miles away. How might this contribute to global climate change? If possible, find local products to buy or a local farmer’s market to support.