Activities for Ice Bears
Place your bare hand in icy water and count how many seconds you can hold it there before getting uncomfortable.
Now make a “blubber glove” by putting one plastic bag inside another with a layer of shortening between them.
The shortening acts like blubbery fat in a polar bear. Put your hand in the “blubber glove” and then back into icy water.
Count the seconds you can hold it before your hand gets uncomfortable. Compare with the seconds possible with a bare hand.
How would a thin polar bear be affected?
Arctic birds have long stiff feathers and short fluffy ones too. Draw different kinds of bird feathers. Which ones
are used for flying? Which ones provide warmth?
Polar bears look white, which is good camouflage, but actually they have translucent hairs and black skin. On a warm day,
place a piece of white paper and a piece of black paper in the sun. Feel them after a few minutes. Which paper is warmer?
Do you think black skin helps to keep polar bears warm? Do you think black water would be warmer than white ice?
Polar bears are intelligent and cubs spend a long time learning how to live in their environment. Make a list of survival
tactics that the cubs must learn in this book. Create a board game for polar bear cubs following a path with many difficult
situations. Put all their survival skills on separate cards that will be upside down while you play. When the cubs advance in
the game to a difficult situation, draw a card. Do they now have the right skill to move to the next place, or do you have to
wait for another turn?
Walruses use ice as a moving platform to carry them over shallow areas where they can dive up to 630 feet to eat clams and
crabs on the ocean bottom. Lately, summer ice close to these shallow feeding areas has melted. Walruses must now gather in
large groups on land. What do you think happens to the nearest supply of clams?