Teacher’s Questions for Antarctica Alive

Teacher’s Questions for Antarctica Alive


Before reading:

  1. Name three types of life found on Antarctica.
  2. Do you think Antarctica was always as cold and icy as it is today? Explain your answer.

During reading:

  1. Describe where the Friis Hills are located. What is the temperature range for the area?
  2. What did Ashworth and Lewis find there? How far down dig they have to dig before finding it?
  3. What is surprising about the scientists’ find in the Friis Hills?
  4. Why do scientists study Antarctica’s ancient life?
  5. Name five plants and animals that lived in ancient Antarctica.
  6. Why is it tough to find remains of these living things on the continent?
  7. Give two reasons why the scientists searched for ancient life in the Friis Hills.
  8. Explain how the ancient life in the Friis Hills has been preserved over millions of years.
  9. Describe how scientists know that forests once grew in the Transantarctic Mountains.
  10. Explain how the fossils of Lystrosaurus and Glossopteris led scientists to the continental drift discovery.
  11. How did dinosaurs and marsupials make it to ancient Antarctica?
  12. How long ago did Antarctica separate from South America? Describe how Antarctica’s isolation keeps the continent cool.
  13. What types of animals live today on Antarctica’s exposed rock faces?

After reading:

1. Why would a crack in an exposed rock face be a good place to live on Antarctica?


1. Do you think it’s important to send scientists to Antarctica and other barren places to study ancient life? Explain your answer.

2. If animals can survive in the coldest regions of Antarctica, where else might scientists look for hidden life? (Hint: Think of places generally considered too inhospitable for life — even out of this world.)