Thursday, November 29, 2012

Happy Antarctica Day!

This Saturday is Antarctica Day! December 1st is the anniversary of the day the Antarctic Treaty was signed in 1959. This is a special date, because the treaty set aside Antarctica as a place “forever to be used exclusively for peaceful purposes… in the interests of all mankind.”  It preserves an entire continent as a place of scientific discovery and peaceful international cooperation. That feels like a rare thing in this day and age!

This is a video produced by Polar Educators International (PEI) to celebrate Antarctica Day:

You can also click on this image to view a poster to learn more about Antarctica Day.

You might be asking yourself: How can I best celebrate Antarctica Day? There are a lot of activities you could do!

For example, you can make a flag to be displayed in Antarctica! You can send in your own drawing of an Antarctica-inspired flag to be displayed by Antarctic scientists in the month of December. All you have to do is draw a flag, turn it into an electronic file, and send! Click here for more information. (Is English not your best language? Click here for translations of this activity into other languages.)

Another idea is to launch a virtual "Antarctica Day balloon". You can join others around the world in celebrating the peaceful, scientific mission that the Antarctic Treaty secures. This website tells you how!

I hope you do something special to celebrate Antarctica Day. I'll be celebrating by getting myself ready to head to the Ice. I leave two weeks from today. Time to start packing!