Water is a necessity of life, so that means that everyone alive has sufficient water, right? Wrong!
As the grade 5/6’s in Mrs. Reinarz’s class learned through the Our Water activity, there is not enough available clean water to meet the worlds use. During this activity, students had to decide how to distribute water among their “community” – for domestic, industrial, and agricultural use. However, in one scenario there is a water shortage, and in the other, and even more dire situation of economic water shortage.
Distribution water at the first station was tough, leaving some users with significantly less or even none of their desired water. The second station took even more thought. Here, there was potential clean water, but for some reason such as political conflict or lack of money, the community couldn’t access it. Instead, the students has to simulate walking long distances to collect small amounts of water at a time. On top of that, this available water was not perfectly clean!
This activity was a big eye opener for Mrs. Reinarz’s class. While many had heard about difficult water access in other parts of the world, this hands-on activity really put things into perspective. The students also connected this activity to the Ecological Footprint lesson, noticing how Eritrea, the country with the lowest Ecological Footprint in the world, also has poor water availability.
Somehow, I don’t think the students will take their clean accessible water for granted now!