Skip to main content

For the first time, Canadians are joining a program of Arctic and Antarctic expeditions created for teachers to collect stories, data and photographs that will help their students learn about climate change and the environment.

National Geographic and Lindblad Expeditions have been sending American teachers to icy locations such as the Arctic, Iceland, Greenland and Antarctica since 2006 and applications were opened to Canadian educators for the first time this year. There were over 1,300 applicants, and three Canadians were amongst the 25 teachers chosen as Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic Grosvenor Teacher Scholars.

One of the educators, Garrett Norman, is an outdoor education teacher with the Toronto District School Board. He returned just over a week ago from the Arctic, where he learned about ice floes, polar bears and documented evidence of climate change.

Story continues below advertisement

"It's provided me with a whole lot of inspiration to bring environmental and geographical issues back into the classroom," he said.

Mr. Norman will spend the summer months crafting lesson plans based on his experiences. Aside from the obvious links to ecosystems, climate change, food chains and geography, the 35-year-old educator intends to tie his trip to parts of the math curriculum.

"Things like calculating how much water is in a glacier," he said.

Sven Lindblad, the owner of Lindblad Expeditions, started the program as a way to inject more natural sciences into the classroom. His company donates the seats on the expeditions -- which cost about $10,000 each, depending on the destination -- and a pre-voyage workshop at National Geographic headquarters in Washingston, D.C. is paid for through a variety of sources, including private donors.

Mr. Lindblad decided teachers were the best way to reach a younger generation, to teach them about the impact of climate change on polar regions without getting political. He is working to expand the program, and hopes to send 50 teachers on expeditions next year.

"Our generation, current adults, don't seem to be willing to deal with these issues in a substantive way, you've got to put some significant bets on subsequent generations," he said.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter