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Connecting to the Poles through TEA E-Mail

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This activity will teach you to write a good friendly letter, and make a connection with a teacher in Antarctica or the Arctic. It will encourage you to use the Internet and email to make that connection.

You will:

  • learn how to write a friendly letter and use email.
  • use the Internet/web site.
  • try to make a connection with another teacher doing polar research.


    Step 1: Your teacher has talked with you about writing a friendly letters/emails in class. He/She has also spent time explaining the importance of using proper grammar and spelling when writing the letter.

    QUESTION - What are three important points to remember when writing a friendly email/letter. (Answer question here.)

    Step 2: Locating the TEA Website. If necessary ask your teacher to show you how to get onto the Internet. They will show you how to use the location bar on the browser. Type in the URL address listed here. (../../) This will take you to the Teachers Experiencing the Arctic and Antarctic Website.

    Step 3: You will be working individually or in partners. Your teacher will assign you into groups if you don't have enough computers. Your job is to select a teacher past or present to send an email message to. Select the teacher based on their biographies and the areas that they study at the poles. Take time to read about the teachers and their research.

    Which TEA teacher do you wish to read about and why?

    If you could talk to the TEA teacher right now, what questions would you ask?

    Name of the TEA Teacher: ________________________ School at which they teach: _______________________ Dates they were at the poles: ____________________ Location of their research: __________________ Describe the science that they did.

    What is the name of the researcher that they worked with? ____________________

    Where is the researcher from: ___________________

    Write down the e-mail address______________________________. **Be sure that the e-mail address is approved and recorded by your teacher.

    Step 4: Read and study the home page of the teacher that you or your group have selected. Link to the TEA teachers journals and read some of the TEA teacher's read at least one week (7 days) of journal entries and take notes of interesting facts. The information you learn from the journals and biography will form the basis for your friendly email letter.

    Write a paragraph summary of what you learned in the journal. (Write your paragraph here). Can you answer your original questions?

    Step 5: Make a list of 3-5 questions to learn more about from the TEA teacher. REMEMBER, your questions should reflect your reading and knowledge about the work that the teacher had done at the poles. These questions should show that you know and understand what the teacher was doing. They should be thoughtful, and well written. (Write Questions here.)






    Step 6: Using the friendly letter form that your teacher has taught you, compose a friendly letter to send to the TEA found on the TEA Web site.... introduce yourself, relate interesting information that was learned from their home page, and ask the 3-5 additional questions that you came up with to learn more information about their school and their research, and ask that they reply through email. Prepare your rough draft on a separate piece of paper.

    **Show your teacher a rough draft before typing, and also get your teacher's approval before sending the email.

    Step 7: Wait for your reply and share your answers with the rest of the class.

    Discussions Questions/Extensions ......

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    data | hook | main | background & resources | student