Earth’s Poles in Peril Additional Information

Recommended Web sites:

To learn more about International Polar Year, check out  (International Polar Year 2007-2008), its counterpart site for the U.S. (United States government,, or Canada (Canadian IPY Secretariat).

To read about Antarctic climate and ecosystems, go to (Australian government, Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre).

To learn about the Census of Antarctic Marine Life, visit

You can also read about the International Polar Foundation at Polar Foundation).

Pegg, J.L. 2007. Life on the down low. Science News for Kids (May 23). Available at

Sohn, Emily. 2007. Fossil forests. Science News for Kids (Jan. 10). Available at

Books recommended by SearchIt!Science:

[book] The North Pole Was Here: Puzzles and Perils at the Top of the World— Andrew C. Revkin

Published by Kingfisher Books/Larousse Kingfisher Chambers, 2006

In 2003, environmental reporter Andrew Revkin joined a scientific expedition to the North Pole—one of the world’s last uncharted frontiers. Revkin became the first New York Times reporter ever to file stories and photographs from the top of the world. His book is a welcome addition to any classroom library as a resource, a history of scientific exploration, and a means to model the scientific processes for classroom investigations. As young scientists come to view themselves as members of a scientific community, this book will guide them in its examination of the past. More than simply a book about the North Pole, this is a study of science as a human endeavor. The author’s philosophy comes through clearly. “. . . science developed into an open activity,” he says in tracing its history, “in which everyone qualified could take part and in which the results belonged to the whole world.”

[book] Journey into the Arctic— Bryan and Cherry Alexander

Published by Oxford University Press, 2003

Our Arctic journey begins in a village in North Greenland. We then travel by dogsled to Arctic Canada. Our guide for this part of the trip is Mamarut, who builds igloos and points out seals, polar bears, and Arctic foxes. Then, we meet up with Malliki, an Inuit guide who takes us by snowmobile to see the caribou, musk oxen, and flowers of the Arctic summer. We stop at a camp occupied by Nenet reindeer herders in Siberia, who take us by reindeer sled past gas-exploration fields and through summer pastures. Finally, we hop on an icebreaker and venture all the way to the North Pole! Filled with color photographs, this exciting cross-continental journey offers a rich portrayal of the people, places, and wildlife of the Arctic.

[book] Into the Ice: The Story of Arctic Exploration— Lynn Curlee

Published by Houghton Mifflin Co., 1998

In a frozen land, brave explorers searched for a Northeast Passage through the polar ice caps. Some of these men died. Some returned home safely. This book is a chronological account of those who journeyed into the ice, beginning in the 4th century B.C. What kinds of people set out on these adventures? How did they travel? This book answers these questions and more. Paintings, time lines, further reading, and an index are included.

[book] Polar Regions— David Lambert

Published by Simon & Schuster, 1988

Ice and snow as far as the eye can see—that’s what life is like in the polar regions. In winter, the sun does not rise for months, and the poles become bitterly cold. During the summer, the sun shines day and night, yet the polar regions never really become warm. This book takes you to the Arctic and Antarctic and shows you what it’s like to live in the coldest places on Earth. Color photos, drawings, and diagrams introduce plant and animal life in the regions, the people who live in their fringe areas, and polar exploration. As barren as they seem, the poles are rich in certain kinds of food and minerals, and this richness puts them at risk from development. Attempts to save the polar regions from being spoiled are described. A glossary, an index, and a list of books for further reading are included.

Return to article

Power Words

climate The general or average weather conditions of a particular region, including such things as temperature, rainfall, wind, and seasonal changes.

icecap A sheet of ice and snow that covers a large area year-round. An icecap that is about 665,000 square miles (1,729,000 square kilometer) covers most of the island of Greenland. The icecaps covering the North South Poles are called polar caps.

polar cap The mass of ice that surround the North Pole or the South Pole. The ice at the North Pole covers most of the Arctic Ocean, and the ice at the South Pole covers most of Antarctica.

pole Either of the points on a sphere where the axis passes through the surface.

Copyright © 2002, 2003 Houghton-Mifflin Company. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

Return to article