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Mammoths of the Ice Age

Classroom Activity

To consider the challenges they might face on a new planet, ways they might need to adapt, and what technology they might need to design for survival.

Materials for each team
  • copy of "Surviving on Planet Niwrad" student handout (HTML)
  1. Changing environmental and climatic circumstances have affected human beings as well as other creatures throughout history. Unlike animals, however, humans can react to these changes by planning, analyzing options, and even altering their environment to suit their needs.

  2. To give students an opportunity to think about some of the ways that humans adapt to a new situation, organize students into groups and distribute copies of the "Surviving on Planet Niwrad" student handout.

  3. Have students consider the challenges they might face on such a planet, as well as what they would need to survive. Compare students answers in a class discussion.

Activity Answer

There are many possible answers to the questions in this fictional scenario. Some of the challenges that students may identify include: planning safe trips to the planet, determining a way to bring construction materials to the planet, building houses and storage facilities on the planet, developing a way of communicating with the residents of the planet, selecting proper clothing, design-ing vehicles for the sandy surface, planning ways of catching fish, and determining whether the food on the planet is safe to eat. Students' questions may be related to any of these adaptations, or to other ideas they generate. Students' ideas for traits and behaviors could vary. They may think that a person who is well-adapted to survive on Niwrad would have big feet and strong legs to travel across the sand without sinking, and strong arms to climb the trees to retrieve the fruit. Students may also suggest that people selected for the mission should be inventive, so that they can fashion tools for catching fish to eat; calm and diplomatic, so that they will not be scared of the native creatures.

Teacher's Guide
Mammoths of the Ice Age

Video is not required for this activity