Igloos

This passage discusses the use of igloos in the Arctic regions.

Lexile Level: 700L

Categories: People & Places


The Inuit built winter villages on sea ice. How did they protect themselves from freezing Arctic winds? They made snow shelters called igloos. These shelters were very comfortable inside. They had a chimney to circulate air. If the igloo became too cold, the Inuit plugged the chimney. If it became too warm, they widened the chimney. Igloos had windows to let light in. They had animal skins for insulation. Melting snow quickly froze again and made an icy film. This sealed tiny holes in the walls and trapped heat inside the igloo. The temperature inside an igloo averaged 65 degrees warmer than outside air with windchill. Built correctly, igloos were very strong. Kids could play on them and slide down their sides. Igloos weren't strong enough to handle spring and summer. With warmer temperatures, the snow shelters melted. The Inuit had to pack up and move into tents until the next winter.


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