National Standards

Summary of key Science Concepts covered through the PASSPORT TO ANTARCTICA Videos, Hands-On Activities and Online Resources

Program 1
The Last Continent

 • Planetary processes and environmental conditions resulting in a continent's weather and climate
 • Plate tectonics and "continental drift"
 • Organization of scientific research on the Ice

Program 2
Fire and Ice

 • Relation of Antarctica's ice sheets to potential global climate change, and research techniques
 • Volcanism and glacial movements
 • Scientific debate using fossils and rocks as evidence for past climate

Program 3
Life in Extreme Environments

 • Organisms and relationships between them in the Antarctic food chain or food web
 • Technology and human organization used to study the Antarctic marine ecosystem
 • Connection between environmental and biological factors impacting species survival

Program 4
Penguin Power:
At Home on the Ice

 • Physiological adaptations to extreme conditions
 • Behavioral adaptations to extreme conditions
 • Unobtrusive observation of organisms and natural environments

Program 5
Seals and the Scientists who Study Them

 • Adaptation at the cellular level (e.g. red blood cells and hemoglobin) allowing seals to dive deep in the ocean
 • Value of comparative studies of mammals for potential human medical benefits
 • Need for, and benefits, of pole-to-pole comparisons

Program 6
Heroes and Heroines:
Explorers Past and Present

 • History of the "Heroic Age" of Antarctic Exploration and profiles of Scott, Shackleton and Amundsen
 • Description of contemporary research infrastructure and diversity of researchers and research
 • How new techniques, such as diving, open "frontiers of knowledge"

Program 7
Laboratory on the Ice

 • How and why Antarctica can support astronomy: nature of the electromagnetic spectrum
 • Meteorites as clues to early solar system
 • Living and working at the South Pole

Program 8
Antarctica and Global Weather and Climate

 • The Ozone Hole and studies of the effect of UV-B radiation on plant life
 • Antarctica and global sea level rise
 • Antarctica as a model for the peaceful, cooperative global scientific enterprise