Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

The Coolest Way to Bring Glaciation to Life

Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

The Coolest Way to Bring Glaciation to Life

Article excerpt

As long as you have a freezer, this lesson is simple to prepare and gives students a great visual representation of how a glacier can change a V-shaped valley into a U-shaped one. It also allows you to get out of the classroom, use technology and bring geography to life in a relatively easy way.

The night before the lesson, I went to the school kitchen with a terrine lined with a layer of small pebbles. I filled the pot with water and left it to freeze overnight. By morning I had the perfect glacier, complete with sediment and crevasses on top.

In a large cooking tray and using some grit provided by the school's estates department (sand also works), I crafted a simple V-shaped valley.

When the glacier was "released" from the terrine I gave the pupils the opportunity to run their hands across the bottom of it. This helped them to realise how rough the base of a glacier really is and how much damage it can do to the landscape.

Next, I slowly moved the glacier down the grit valley from top to bottom. …

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