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Arctic Science Day 2016 Recap

Posted on March 9, 2016


The 7th Annual Arctic Science Day was held this past Friday, March 4th, under cloudy skies with snow falling and warming temperatures.Scientists from University of Manitoba (CEOS) and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans arrived to share their research and inspire 144 Grades 6-12 students to future careers in climate change research. A big thanks to all the participating graduate students and researchers, to Michelle Watts of Schools on Board/ArcticNet for her role in coordinating, to teachers who registered their students, and to the FortWhyte volunteers and staff who helped out with the day.

High school students spent the day visiting six research stations on remote Lake Cargill, traveling by snowshoe from the main site. Stations included aquatic biology, marine mammals, meteorology, archaeology, ice coring and contaminants. Students examined water samples under microscopes; used scientific equipment to sample ice, snow, and test weather conditions; and examined marine mammal artifacts and archaeological finds from Canada's North. Attendees from 14 schools totalled 70 students and 18 teachers.

At the Interpretive Centre, Grades 6/7 students from H.C. Avery and Grade 9 students from Ecole Charleswood School learned how to tell the age and life stories of fish by dissecting out their "ear bones" (or, otoliths), measured properties of ice and snow, and learned about Inuit culture by playing fun games like the musk-ox push.

Many teachers bring their classes back to FortWhyte year after year for this unique event, which connects students with the Arctic's remote ecosystem and human communities that are experiencing immense changes due to human-caused climate change. It inspires youth towards future career choices in science and environmental studies, and also gets them thinking about the role they can play in their own communities to reduce greenhouse gas pollution and their impact on our shared environment.

Once again, thank you to all of those involved! We're already looking forward to next year!