Polar Bear Research

Cassidy Heaton

Cody Smith


Timeline for Project:

Thursday 31-Thursday 7

During this time, Cassidy will work on how polar bears have been affected by global warming, and I will work on a graph to go with the passage. I will also work on telling the history and information on the mascot being a Nanook. We’ll plan on working on it mainly in class, and on our own time if need be.

Tuesday 12-Thursday 14

Cassidy and I will then work on finding an audio recording of an Alaskan Native story on polar bears. If we can’t find a suitable recording, we’ll look for a story, and write on why it is important and how it pertains to our topic.

Tuesday 19-Thursday 22

Cassidy and I will work on any additional information we decide to work on at the time. Some possible options are; making a survey on how much students know about the history behind the Nook, a video that pertains to the topic, or any photos we happen to come across.


Annotated Bib Of Research:

“Global Warming and Polar Bears – National Wildlife Federation.” Global Warming and Polar Bears – National Wildlife Federation. National Wildlife Federation, n.d. Web. 29 Mar. 2016.


This source talks about polar bears and global warming. The  polar bear is actually a marine mammal that spends far more time at sea than it does on land. It is on the Arctic ice that the polar bear makes its living, which is why global warming is such a serious threat to its well-being. It talks about how polar bears are being impacted by global warming. It states that by 2050 the polar bear population two thirds of polar bears will disappear. This is in our lifetime, and it is scary. The main things that this source touches on is population size will decrease, retreating ice platforms, scarcity of food, and polar bear status.


“Climate Change.” Climate Change. Polar Bears International, 2016. Web. 29 Mar. 2016.


This source talks about how climate change is not only affecting polar bears but also people. It states scientific facts about global warming which is the main reason for climate change. It says things about what scientists think about global warming. According to the laws of physics dictate that the world will grow warmer and warmer as greenhouse gas and concentrations rise.  Although there is no uncertainty about this. Over 97% of scientists in climate change agree that human activities are the current cause of climate disruption. This source also talks about how polar bears are being affected and about what we can do to help the situation.


Bennett, Megan. “Three Mascots, One University.” The Sun Star. University of Fairbanks Alaska, 20 Oct. 2015. Web. 29 Mar. 2016.


This source talks about the history of the mascot, how it has changed three different times throughout the years and how the university still used all three at appearances before the other two got discarded.The costumes before were donated by the individuals that volunteered to wear the suit which lead to differing appearances in the portrayal of the mascot.  Talks about how much the one that the university just bought.  The university has a “Big Nook” and a “Little Nook”.  The Little Nook is meant to involve the youth in the university’s events by giving them opportunities to participate. Talks about the pride of the mascot and how it is unique, and who wears both the mascots.


“Alaska Native People :: Saint Louis Zoo.” Home :: Saint Louis Zoo. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Mar. 2016.


This source explains the importance of the polar bear to the Native Alaskans. This video includes a more personal view of the impact of global warming, and the decline in population of the polar bears. These people that are interviewed are immersed in the lifestyle of always having polar bears around. They even tell of how they were the first ones to notice the thinning of the ice in Northern Alaska. I included this specific video because it was a cross between a documentary on global warming and an interview of how much polar bears mean to the Native Alaskan culture.


Summary Of Project:

Our project is going to focus primarily on the polar bear, the history behind our University’s mascot, the Nanook (meaning polar bear in Inupiaq), and how global warming is impacting them. We plan on having a image that we found at the museum which is a painting of two polar bears walking across a snowy landscape, for our project and have some links directly connecting to the  trigger image that we use, which is a polar bear. We are going to include information about the decline of polar bears over time in a timeline, as well as a short video possibly with a voice over recording, to explain what is going on in the video and extra comments as to the reason behind the making, and why we decided to include it in the project. The way we will portray the history of the Nook, is to show the visuals of what each mascot looked like, and then under the pictures will be the passage explaining the evolution.

Also we will be touching on the habitat of the polar bear and what they need in order to survive. We are also looking into including a Native Alaskan story with the reoccurring theme of a polar bear. The medium in which we will include this information is a toss up between an audio recording, a video, or a written story. The story would portray a more immersive importance and impact the polar bear had on the Natives through food, warmth, and spiritual guidance.

The impact we are hoping to have on our audience is, overall, more awareness about the importance of the polar bear (to UAF and the Natives to Alaska), and how greatly the changing of the weather has impacted it. It is a serious problem, and even more so because it not only happened in the past, but is still very prevalent within our lifetime.


One thought on “Polar Bear Research

  1. This sounds like a good idea! Using the Polar Bear as your main point leaves a lot of ways that you can branch off and still be able to connect back to the students. Having a connection with the mascot will be a very relatable subject because I feel that most people will be interested in learning some of the history or reason behind choosing the Polar Bear as our mascot. Also since global warming is such a touchy subject, hitting on that and the shrinking ice caps will be another easy way to get a lot more people interested and be able to make a connection with them.


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