During Week 8 in Term 1, the Year 10 classes headed into Ōtautahi’s city centre and to the Antarctic Centre on a field trip that aimed to help us learn more about climate change and the effect that climate change is having on Antarctica.
We spent one half of this day with our Christchurch City Council Educator, Celia. We talked about carbon emissions and how they can change based on the size and industry of the location. We discussed how we can make positive changes and work on the different problems globally, nationally and within Ōtautahi. Some of these issues are coastal erosion, rising temperatures, and extreme weather events. We learnt that the effects of climate change on our planet are extremely concerning. It is not too late to act on it, but there is not much time left so we need to make positive choices and changes now. We also played a few games and did some activities which made it easier for us to get a grasp of the issues we are currently facing.
We spent the other half of the day in the Antarctic Centre with our educator and guide, Jane. We learnt about the impact that climate change has had and is still having on Antarctica. We started by watching a video about climate change and how it is affecting not only the land but the seas around Antarctica and the marine life and ecosystems as well. Climate change is heating up the atmosphere causing the ice sheets to melt or retreat, leading to rising sea levels and a decreasing coastal habitat for Antarctic animals. This makes it hard for the ice algae to bloom which then impacts the food supply for Krill and then the domino effect starts - leaving less food for other species and disrupting the delicate marine ecosystem.
After we learnt about the climate change aspect, we spent the rest of our trip working our way through the fun and amazing things the Antarctic Centre has to offer. This included the storm room, the Hägglunds ride, seeing the penguins and patting the huskies. We were also able to test out the Science Alive experiments and learn about the important role Antarctica plays in scientific research and discovery
The Antarctic centre helped us link what we learnt in the city centre to the impact on Antarctica and therefore the world. The learning we did on this field trip also helped us back at school as Antarctica and climate change have been our two main topics of learning this term. Overall, this trip gave us heaps of valuable memories, it was our first trip away as a class and was without a doubt lots of fun.