Hosted at St. Vrain Valley School District, the Virtual Field Trip will provide students with the opportunity to hear about Mount Kilimanjaro first-hand from educators who climbed the mountain. They will learn about collecting environmental data on the mountain’s six biomes and meet a NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory scientist to discuss the SMAP Mission, a satellite that measures the Earth’s soil moisture. Students will learn about the importance of collecting this data and how they can participate by completing their own research.
Ask the team your questions through Twitter @DiscoveryEd using the hashtag, #DiscoverKili ahead of time – you never know, it may get answered live on air!
Embarking on the expedition will be 10 students, 12 educators, and 4 scientists representing Nigeria, Oman, South Africa, Tanzania, and the United States. This international team will attempt to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, one of the world's Seven Summits, and the tallest mountain on the African continent.
Follow along as they explore the incredible terrain of the mountain as well as the culture and surrounding wildlife. Each day, the team will submit a blog post on blog.discoveryeducation.com that will capture their unique perspective on the journey through the eyes of the students, teachers and scientists.
Have your students follow along the blog posts, track the scientific findings, and interact with the travelers on Twitter by tweeting @DiscoveryEd using the hashtag, #DiscoverKili. Not on Twitter? Email your questions directly to the team at DiscoveryKili@gmail.com.
Today, students and teachers reviewed science protocols with Sylivester Chaisamba, Head of the Climatology Department, Tanzania Meteorological Agency (TMA). We received a mountain briefing and everyone is doing well, looking forward to the upcoming challenge of Kilimanjaro. We are all wondering, what will the mountain be like? How difficult will the climb be?Read the Complete Journal Entry
One thing that is hard to get across in pictures is how big the mountain actually is.Mt. Kilimanjaro gets its name from the Swahili name, Kilima "hill or little mountain" and Njaro for "white or shining". It lies on the border of Tanzania and Kenya, just south of the Equator. Kilimanjaro with its three volcanic cones, Shira, Kibo and Mawensi is an inactive volcano, part of the Great African Rift Valley, which extends to the west. Kilimanjaro is almost 70 miles wide.Read the Complete Journal Entry
Our guides are great! They get us moving, keep us moving, and are encouraging us along the way. "Pole, pole" (pronounced with a long "o" and a long "a", as in "polay"), that's the greeting we hear from our guides and porters as we are walking. Pole, means "slowly". The trick to climbing this mountain is to take it slowly... slowly, but keep moving. Today will be moving from the Forest Biome to a Heath Zone. The trees will be much shorter and there won't be as much moisture. What is it like where you live?Read the Complete Journal Entry
Today we stopped to take a close look at the skull and bones of an elephant that is thought to be killed around 1980. It is amazing that such a big animal made it so far up the mountain. We are at 13,661 feet. Was it looking for water or food or did it just possess the soul of an explorer?Read the Complete Journal Entry
Today we hiked through the most magical part of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the Barranco Valley. We made our way through a moss forest and then to the Valley where the Giant Lobelia and Senecio trees which are found nowhere else in the world. The Lobelia, In order to protect the sensitive leaf buds from the night time temperatures, close their leaves around the central core.Read the Complete Journal Entry
Today was a very long and tough hike. We passed Barafu Camp on our way to Kossove Camp. Barafu, translating to ice in Swahili should give you some idea as to the temperature at this elevation. Each night the students continue to answer questions via e-mail and we are trying to answer as many as possible but have been overwhelmed with the numbers. We are all so very excited to be able to share this adventure with each of you.Read the Complete Journal Entry
WE HAVE MADE IT TO THE SUMMIT! It is currently 10:30 local time. We made it to the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest point in Africa! It was a very long climb, over many days, to the summit. We are now looking out at glaciers and clouds. The view is spectacular. Most of us now agree that this is the hardest thing we have ever done. Lots of us have had headaches and upset stomachs, but we feel MUCH better now that we have reached the top of Africa.Read the Complete Journal Entry
Check out The Globe Program's complete research, data and findings on their website.
Have questions for the team? Ask them directly on Twitter @DiscoveryEd using the hashtag #DiscoverKili or email them at DiscoveryKili@gmail.com.
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