Study Guides—March of the Blue Moon

March of the Blue Moon —Chapters 1-8

  1. Where is Alaska located? Draw a map of Alaska with the countries and bodies of water that border it. What are the advantages and disadvantages of its location? What is unique about its capital city? What are some of Alaska’s greatest strengths? Weaknesses? What is the Alaska nickname for the first forty-eight states in the union? What misconceptions did you have about Alaska and its people? From where did this misleading information come? Why?


  1. Explain the significance of the eight gold stars and the field of blue on the Alaska state flag. Why are the dipper/ bear and the North Star important to Alaska’s flag? What is the state motto? How did Alaska become our 49th state? Discuss how former Secretary of State William Seward’s purchase of Alaska in 1867 proved to be an ingenious decision.


  1. In what ways is the topography of Alaska both an asset and a liability? Describe what a tourist flying in an airplane would see below. What are the effects of climate change on Alaska? Describe and locate Alaska’s five different climate zones. What accounts for the great disparity in rainfall amounts? What surprises you the most about Alaska’s weather conditions?


  1. What factors do state and federal governments take into account when deciding which bills should become laws? Give examples of groups that encourage or discourage public policy. What roles might social media and special interest groups play in influencing public opinion? Should the majority rule? When, if ever, should the opinion of the majority be overturned or diluted?


What features make an ideal community and/or state? Does your home
state meet these requirements? What improvements are needed? What
obstacles must be overcome to reach this goal?


  1. Which industries contribute the most to Alaska’s financial stability and wealth? What are the most important jobs in Alaska? Why? In what industries do most Alaskans work? What problems might be encountered in day-to-day living? What resources are available for residents who fall upon hard times?

March of the Blue Moon—Chapters 9-14

  1. Discuss the expeditions and contributions of explorers Vitus Bering, James Cook, and George Vancouver. What problems did they encounter? Who was Capt. Michael A. Healy? What were his accomplishments? What is the significance of the Bering Land Bridge? Which people and animals may have traveled this route? How were the economy and colonization patterns impacted by these explorations and expeditions?


  1. Define indigenous. Which indigenous groups live in Alaska? What languages are spoken there? Compare/ contrast the cultures of at least three of these groups. Describe the armor and masks worn by indigenous warriors. What issues caused the rivalries among the groups? Explain the significance of totem poles. What area of Alaska would you visit to find the best examples of this cultural phenomenon? Define potlatch as an economic system. What can we infer about the groups that practiced this system? What left-over evidence teaches us about ancient cultures? List some similarities and differences between these indigenous Alaska groups and the Native American groups of the Lower 48. What conclusions can you draw?


  1. What causes earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions? How is the topography of an area changed by these natural disasters? List some positive and negative variations that resulted from natural disasters.


  1. What adaptations helped land and sea mammals to survive in Alaska? What group habits help to protect their species? Define migration. Explain how Alaska wildlife of the land, sea, and air have used migration to adapt to changing environmental and climatic conditions. What patterns emerge? Is this a result of instinct or intelligence?


  1. Create a chart with examples of at least three examples each of Alaska’s creatures of the land, sea, and air. Include class, habitat, diet, natural enemies, and life span. Which class is most endangered? Why? What can humans do to protect these species?

March of the Blue Moon—Chapters 15-20

  1. Where is the Alaska Triangle located? What possible explanations have been offered to explain the thousands of missing people? Which theory do you find the most plausible? Why? Define positive and negative vortex. Where else in the world are these phenomena located?


  1. Pretend you have spent the day dog mushing in Alaska. Write a long email to your best friend telling about your experience. Be sure to include: voice commands and their meanings, the breed of your sled dogs, what food your dogs ate, how you controlled the sled, and the excitement you felt during this experience.


Who was Balto? Why is he so important to the history of Alaska? How was
Balto honored? Where can you find statues of Balto in the United States?


  1. Explain why Lance Mackey is an anti-hero hero. List at least five amazing things that you learned about him. In what ways does this change your ideas about people who might or might not succeed? How can you apply this new attitude to yourself or someone you know?


After learning more about the sport of dog sledding for the Iditarod race,
would you ever consider becoming a contestant? Discuss the pros and
cons of your thinking.


  1. How can you tell the difference between a grizzly and a black bear? What behaviors should you avoid while hiking in bear populated areas? What behaviors should you practice? If you encounter one of these bears while hiking, what should you do? How many people have been killed by bears in Alaska? Now that you understand the possible dangers, create a poster warning people to be careful, adding safety rules to your message.


  1. What is the definition of idiom? List five idiomatic expressions you use in your everyday speech, for example, “get off my back,” “he’s rocking it,” “go with the flow.” Pretend you are having a silly argument. Write a short back and forth conversation using only idiomatic expressions.

March of the Blue Moon—Chapters 21-26

  1. Name at least ten types of energy. Give examples of each. Which forms of energy do you use in your everyday life? Which types are not essential to human, plant, or animal existence? Which type is the most dangerous? Why?
  2. List Newton’s Three Laws of Motion. Give examples from nature and  from natural and man-made disasters.

3. Define reactivity. What are the most reactive elements? The least
reactive?  How can reactivity be described? How is the Periodic Table
used  to predict reactivity? Describe one example each of reactivity with         negative and positive consequences in natural and man-made disasters.
Locate gold on the Periodic Table. Draw two conclusions about gold from
the information on this table.

  1. What is the Electromagnetic Spectrum? How is this energy used in everyday life? How is it measured? What is the Aurora Borealis? Does it make noise? Where is it visible? When? What protects the Earth from electromagnetic radiation from space? Is the aurora dangerous? Why are satellites preferred as a means for long-term space observations?How are Fact and Opinion different? Find examples of each. What are the advantages and disadvantages of combining fact and opinion on the same topic?

Choose an argument found in a written text. List the facts and opinions.
Decide if the author successfully supports the premise of the argument.Try
to find holes in the presentation. Send an email to the author either
supporting or disagreeing with the written text. Support your answer.

  1. How are Fact and Opinion different? Find examples of each. What are the advantages and disadvantages of combining fact and opinion on the same topic?

Choose an argument found in a written text. List the facts and opinions.. Decide if the author successfully supports the premise of the argument.Try to find holes in the presentation. Send an email to the author either supporting or disagreeing with the written text. Support your answer.

March of the Blue Moon—Chapters 27-32


  1. What is paleontology? Where did dinosaurs live? What happened to them? What changes on Earth are believed to have contributed to their fate? Were they warm or cold blooded, or a combination? Which of their descendants are still living? How is it possible?


  1. Why does Alaska have over 1,000 earthquakes a year? How are icebergs formed? What is the difference between blue and white icebergs? Why aren’t any reptiles living in Denali National Park? Why is the discovery of Blue Babe in 1979 so important?


  1. What is the purpose of ANWR the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge? Why is the ANWR so important? How much oil is in Alaska? Should drilling be allowed? What other natural resource conservation efforts exist in Alaska? In what ways have these efforts been effective? What obstacles have been encountered in conservation efforts?



Choose your premise: Drilling Should or Should Not Be Allowed in the ANWR.  Organize your answer: List your supporting facts and expert opinion.
Incorporate visual aids: Charts, diagrams, illustrations, photos.
State your conclusion: Make sure you have proven your point.


  1. Let’s analyze your response in Question 3. Do your visual aids help or hinder comprehension? When is it a good idea to use visual aids? Should visual aids be used alone or in combination with written text? Explain.


  1. Choose a persuasive piece of writing. Identify primary and secondary sources. What differentiates primary and secondary sources? Describe the organizational format of the work you are analyzing: Cause/Effect, Compare/Contrast, Sequential Order, Question & Answer. Was the chosen format successful in communicating ideas? Substitute the other methods to see how the message is affected. Which organizational method is most effective? Least effective? Why? What conclusion can be drawn?





Saturday, March 14, 2020- Barnes & Noble, Massapequa, NY 12:00-4:00pm

March 2023
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