Introduction and materials
'Living' introduces the people who live and work in Antarctica. We explore the personal and professional qualities they need, the effects of isolation and the constraints of their temporary home. It also shows how people chronicle their individual experiences and provides a springboard for discussing career options.
Careers in the Antarctic
Antarctic stations provide a useful microcosm of many of society's jobs since they operate as small, self-sufficient villages or communities. The following activities lead students to a greater understanding and awareness of job and career opportunities, not just in Antarctica but also in Australia.
Career paths
Career path activities identify the education and training requirements to develop possible career paths, and raise the issues of what can influence job selection and the ability of individuals to shape their careers.
At home - those left behind
There are many situations in which family members and friends are separated (e.g. war, oil rigs, navy, divorce, boarding school).
What would you look for in a potential Antarctic expeditioner?
Selection - choosing the right people
Antarctic expeditioners need to be highly qualified in their occupation and possess the special personal qualities that will enable them to live and work harmoniously in a small, isolated community.
For all the harshness of the environment, and despite better communication technology, the major and enduring dangers to the individual are the isolation, and the problem of getting along with others.
Conflict resolution
The Antarctic framework is very useful in stimulating students' understanding of conflict, whether it be minor discomfort or serious confrontation. The conflict resolution and mediation skills developed in these activities can be adapted to most situations.
Women and Antarctica
It was not until 1959 that an Australian woman officially visited Macquarie Island as part of the Australian Antarctic programme.
Children and Antarctica
Children are still relatively rare visitors to Antarctica.
Food for thought
Meals are very important, especially when heavy work is done in extreme cold. Five thousand calories or more could be needed. Vitamin and protein content must be watched carefully and, as the air is so dry, there must be plenty of fluids to drink.
Your Antarctic expedition
Have the students plan 'the youngest expedition to the South Pole'. They will research, prepare for and carry out a simulated trek to the South Pole on foot. Their aim will be to become the youngest group to ever make a successful expedition to the South Pole. Along the way they will strike many difficulties in this remote and dangerous place, and learn about the Antarctic climate, terrain, wildlife and the importance of being suitably equipped.
Diary writing
Since the earliest days, many expeditioners have kept a diary of their activities while living in Antarctica. There are now many diary accounts of the experiences of Antarctic expeditioners from different nations to be found on the web.
Midwinter celebrations
One of the biggest events in the Antarctic calendar is Midwinter, around 21 June, which celebrates the halfway point in the long polar night.
This page was last modified on August 5, 2015.