Our journey to the Antarctic brings together an extraordinary team of Canadian and international high school and college/university students, educators, scientists, historians, artists, explorers, authors, leaders, innovators and polar experts. Together, we will create a transformative educational journey that fosters a new understanding and respect for the Antarctic as a wilderness, homeland, laboratory, symbol of peace and one of the Greatest Classrooms on Earth!
Learning and Connecting Across Disciplines
The Antarctic is an incredible platform for experiential learning and the impact will be extraordinary and unique for each student.
Joined with expert staff, students will explore the Antarctic environment and the many social, environmental and geopolitical issues facing our planet. Our education program is interdisciplinary in nature, bridging conventional disciplinary boundaries to offer our students a program that encompasses the myriad issues that pertain to the regions we visit. To this end, our program places emphasis on our world as a global ecosystem, in which all natural and human created systems are interconnected. As such, subjects such as arts; history; cultural studies; media and communications; social sciences; earth sciences; political economy; geopolitics; sustainable development and climatology are studied in conjunction with one another, giving our students an all-encompassing and unparalleled introduction to the Antarctic.
In starting with a very ‘hands-on’ approach, active participation and critical thinking are important elements in the SOI learning process. Our expeditions become personal learning journeys and include general knowledge building, the development of a relational understanding of the issues, opportunities and challenges facing the Antarctic of today and in the future, as well as personal reflection on how each student might transfer this unique learning experience into his/her daily life post-expedition.
It is our hope that each student’s SOI expedition experience will serve as a transformative catalyst to drive the decisions they make as global citizens.
While lectures and seminars make up an integral part of our education program, rich learning opportunities also occur on expedition outside of the ‘formal program.’ An experience shared on a hike, a solo-sit on a tabular iceberg or time shared on the ship’s deck observing wildlife and our natural surroundings, all serve as potential ‘transformative moments’. Embracing an approach that we (adults and students alike) are all ‘learners’ together on this expedition is an important element of SOI’s unique program experience.
Keen to take advantage of our unique make-up of high school and university participants, we have woven in a Peer Mentoring Program that will support student learning by connecting high school participants with university student mentors in smaller educational circles. The purpose is to provide students with the opportunity to reflect, question, share and process the experiences they live each day on the journey. Working with university student facilitators, student participants consider different topics and themes and work through learning activities that guide their reflection. Peer facilitators consult with students to determine how they should use their time together. They also help students reflect on their experiences on individual consciousness, and translate these into potential positive outcomes in their respective home communities and lives.
New this year, Students on Ice is excited to partner with the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University to offer a credit course, Introduction to Remote Sensing, on the 2014 Antarctic Expedition.
Prior to the expedition, students are also encouraged to do as much reading and research as possible. Please visit our Reading List for some excellent links to online articles to help you get started as well as a suggested reading list.