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January, 2009

Beyond Penguins and Polar Bears
Resources for teaching about the Arctic and Antarctic by integrating inquiry-based science with literacy instruction.
Grade Level: Pre-K-2, 3-5


http://beyondpenguins.nsdl.org/

CONTENT
Beyond Penguins and Polar Bears is an online magazine for elementary teachers that offers information and resources for teaching about the Arctic and Antarctic by integrating inquiry-based science with literacy instruction. The magazine is produced by Ohio State University with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF).
SITE DESIGN
The site has a typical online magazine layout with the current issue featured on the main page. A navigation bar at the top of the page links users to other content and the archived issues.
 

REVIEW
Beyond Penguins and Polar Bears is a great resource for elementary teachers who want to further their own knowledge of the Arctic and Antarctica and that of their students. Each issue provides standards-based science and literacy learning across five departments; In the Field: Scientist at Work; Professional Learning; Science and Literacy; Across the Curriculum; and Polar News and Notes. Teachers will find classroom science activities, images and multimedia resources to supplement their science curriculum. Visitors to the site should not overlook the top navigation bar, which has links to browse all the columns categorized into groups according to the five departments, an archive of past issues, and most importantly for teachers, stories for students. This section offers featured stories from past issues written at the K-1, 2-3, and 3-5 grade levels in three formats (text only, illustrated book, and electronic book). Each story includes an overview of the content, links to the original articles and related activities, and links to all grade levels and formats. Students can read the online books independently or choose to turn on the narration and read along. This is a wonderful resource with engaging content to use with English Language Learners and those with reading difficulties.

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01/19/2009