You may need to pull on a pair of fuzzy wool socks and heat up a cuppa cocoa before reading these books. Get ready for some armchair adventures into the frozen polar regions.
Polar Worlds, by Wade, Rosalyn.
The first half introduces the polar environment and highlights things explorers need to stay alive. The second half focuses on animals in the north and south polar regions, from puffins to penguins.
Ice: Chilling Stories From a Disappearing World, by Laura Buller, Andrea Mills, and John Woodward
A browsable book that ranges from the prehistoric to present. Meet polar plants, frozen frogs, and other wonders of the icy world. Plenty of climate change alerts sprinkled throughout the pages.
Climate Change and the Polar Regions, by Michael Burgan.
An introduction shows how scientists study climate. Following chapters focus on the impacts of climate change to the Arctic and Antarctic, from melting ice to changing ocean currents to wildlife.
Antarctica: Enchantment of the World, by Wil Mara
Did you know there was moss and grass growing in Antarctica or frozen steam towers from active volcanoes? How about that someone was born there? In addition to amazing maps, showing all the research stations and land forms, and unbelievable photographs, this book explores the history, scientists, politics, tourism, exploitation, and folklore of Antarctica.
The Arctic, by Wayne Lynch
It may look cold and barren, but the Arctic is filled with a diversity of wildlife. From seabirds to blubbery beasts, this photo-rich book provides a field trip to the land of the midnight sun.
Arctic Tundra : Life at the North Pole, by Salvatore Tocci
This book presents an overview of the tundra – a desert at the top of the world. Readers will see how ice and cold shape the landscape and the plants and animals that live there.
Poles Apart: Why Penguins and Polar Bears Will Never Be Neighbors by Elaine Scott
After exploring the fossil evidence of Pangea, this book offers a look at the unique physical and climactic differences of each pole, the people and animals that reside in each, and the lessons gained from explorers and scientists. It includes a good resource list of books and websites.
Frozen Realms, by Melissa Gish
Explore the deep sea beneath the North Pole! Numerous short “Ask a Scientist” features accompany photographs of amazing underwater creatures – including dragons.
Polar Scientists and Explorers
Beginning on page one, readers are in a helicopter, chasing polar bears. Once captured, the scientists collect measurements and take samples of blood, fat, and even hair. Then they fasten a radio collar around the bear’s neck and move away, so the polar bear can return to its own hunt. There’s a series of conversations with a scientist, and thoughtful comments about the impacts of a warming climate on polar bears.
Frozen Secrets: Antarctica Revealed, by Sally M. Walker
This book focuses on modern explorers and scientists. You’ll learn how to survive extreme cold and meet the scientists studying the secrets of the ice, from how it forms to how it moves. And there’s a robot!
Interspersed among the realities of bone chilling cold and blinding sunlight, are descriptions of scientists who have and do work in the Antarctic. These scientists found dinosaurs, meteorites, 20,000 species of nematodes, coral, and massive glaciers in Antarctica. The engaging text and sidebars combine with chapter notes, a glossary, further reading & links to create a great look at a chilly science.
Lost in the Antarctic: The Doomed Voyage of the Endurance, by Tod Olson
Olsen writes a compelling, account of Ernest Shackleton’s ill-fated 1914 expedition to Antarctica. When their ship, the Endurance, became trapped in a sea of ice, the crew rescued whatever food and supplies they could. There are maps, photos, packing lists, and enough ice and frigid weather to make you head to the kitchen for a mug of cocoa.
Race to the Bottom of the Earth: Surviving Antarctica, by Rebecca E. F. Barone
This book chronicles the parallel journeys undertaken by Antarctic explorers. In 1910 two explorers, each leading their own expedition, set their sights on reaching the South Pole: Captain Robert Scott and Roald Amundsen. Their goal: to be the first to reach the Pole and make history. In 2018 two more explorers set off for the South Pole. Captain Louis Rudd hoped to complete the first solo crossing of Antarctica. Colin O’Brady set out on the same trek, determined to make it across the finish line first. Adventure mixes with STEM in this nail-biting story of survival.
STEM Tuesday book list prepared by:
Sue Heavenrich writes about science for children and their families, from space to backyard ecology. A long line of ants marching across the kitchen counter inspired her first article for kids. When not writing, she’s committing acts of citizen science in the garden. She blogs about science for kids and families at archimedesnotebook.blogspot.com.
Maria Marshall is a children’s author, blogger, and poet passionate about making nature and reading fun for children. She’s been a judge for the Cybils Awards from 2017 to present. Her poems are published in The Best Of Today’s Little Ditty 2017-2018, 2016, and 2014-2015 anthologies. When not writing, critiquing, or reading, she bird watches, travels the world, bakes, and hikes. Visit her at www.mariacmarshall.com/blog.