• iceberg
  • boy with flowers
  • checking water quality
  • planet eclipse
  • solarsystem model
  • rangitoto trees
  • kids with test tubes
  • kids with earth
  • snowy mountains
  • teens in physics class
  • Rainbow Clouds

    Refraction and diffraction of light through ice crystals in the clouds

  • Philippa On The Ice

    Philippa On The Ice Philippa Werry at an Antarctic research camp 2016

New Zealand Science Teacher

Teacher Education in Science

Writer on a mission to get kids thinking about Antarctica

Author Philippa Werry is currently preparing for a trip to Antarctica, courtesy of Antarctica New Zealand (antarcticanz.govt.nz). She hopes to come back with lots of ideas for resources that will engage kids in thinking about the continent at the bottom of the world.

Adelie and Panasonic HCX 1000

Philippa has been accepted for the Antarctica New Zealand community engagement programme (formerly Artists and Writers to Antarctica), for the the 2016-2017 summer season. This means she’ll be on the white continent between the 1st and 8th of December.

Her mission is to experience the wonder of Antarctica for herself, and pass on that sense of awe to kids around New Zealand, in the form of resources and materials she authors.

Some of her initial ideas for things kids can get involved in include:

  • a ‘thinking about Antarctica day’

  • Antarctica Q & A: asking children to send these in and posting the answers on Philippa’s blog

  • winter letters: Philippa would love to receive lots of letters written and sent to the staff at Scott Base who are wintering over – a great way to build connections and get students thinking about what it is like to live and work down there.

The Antarctica NZ Community Engagement Programme plays a crucial role in informing and influencing the public's understanding of the scientific endeavours being undertaken in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. The aim of the programme is to support innovative community engagement proposals which align to Antarctica New Zealand's purpose: inspiring people to connect with Antarctica, through knowledge, collaboration and vision.

The programme encourages media, artists, teachers and writers to propose projects that will meet these goals. The number of opportunities for travel to Antarctica are limited, meaning there is strong competition. Antarctica New Zealand wants applicants to demonstrate their outreach ability and will reward those who can demonstrate a genuine interest in Antarctica and the environment.

Go here to find out more about the programme.

Any teachers who would like to keep in touch with Philippa can contact her on books@philippawerry.co.nz

Teachers and students can also read, follow or send questions to Philippa’s blog, which is here.  

Philippa has developed a resources pack to anyone who would like to make use of it. The pack also contains templates for ‘ask me about Antarctica’ and for winter letters to Scott Base scientists. Contact her at the email address above. 

On her return, Philippa will be writing an article for NZST on her Antarctica experience. Stay tuned!

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