The Arctic region of North America stretches 5000 miles from the Bering Strait to Greenland. The January temperatures often drop to -40º Fahrenheit. The land is flat except for the central Alaska area.




Model of an Igloo Built by a Student

Permanent homes were made of stone and earth. They were built partially underground. Whale ribs sometimes supported the roof. Temporary winter hunting lodges called igloos were made from snow and ice. The Inuit formed a circular foundation of ice blocks. They stacked smaller blocks to create a dome at the top. A small hole was left for ventilation. Gaps in the ice blocks were filled with soft snow and the inside was lined with furs.


Inuit Clothing

Inuit Woman


Warm clothing was important to the Inuit tribes. Sealskin was usually worn in the summer. In the winter caribou skin was worn. Caribou skin was light weight yet very warm. Clothing was also made of other skins including those of musk oxen, polar bears, and birds. The women skinned the animals and made the clothing. The women used bones for needles and gut thread. Both men and women wore hooded tunics and trousers over long boots. The women's tunics were made very large so she could carry her baby inside the tunic.