Curriculum & Resources: Water
Great Resources for Teaching
from the August 2010 YES! Education Connection Newsletter
Read the newsletter: Lessons to celebrate and protect clean, fresh water
From measuring your water footprint to understanding the breadth of the BP oil spill, here is a bounty of resources for your classroom of local and world citizens.
H2O Conserve is an online source of tools and information that enables individuals to make water conservation part of their everyday lives. The New York City-based nonprofit is dedicated to bringing awareness to the complexities and concerns that surround water supply and water quality, and to advocating for solutions to protecting this vital planet resource.
Water conservation is something that anyone can do. But it does take time and awareness. H2O Conserve offers tools and information to help your students make water conservation part of their everyday lives.
Water Footprint Calculator
A water footprint measures how much water someone uses for a specific duration of time. It includes water that is used directly (shower, cooking, drinking) and indirectly to produce consumer goods (plastic to produce).
The H2O Conserve Water Footprint Calculator will give you and your students an honest assessment of how much water you use. It will applaud what you’re doing well (recycling saves water!) and flag where you might improve. Rather than wallow in the fact that Americans have the world’s largest water footprints—reflective of our reliance on animal products—motivate your students to find out where they can begin making positive changes.
VISIT: Water Footprint Calculator
Water Saving Tips
After your students have measured their water footprints, review these water saving tips and choose some to adopt; for a start, select one that is relatively easy and another that is do-able, but requires some thought and effort. H2O Conserve categorizes suggestions by usage (kitchen, gardening, entertainment, etc.) and notes if they’re free, low-cost or somewhat pricey. Explore the benefits of graywater systems, which recycles water used in the home i.e. shower, laundry, sink, and find out if graywater reuse is allowed in your community.
EXPLORE: Water Saving Tips
The BP oil spill has raised many questions, but with little consensus on how to recover and prevent such devastation from happening again. What we know for certain is that it’s the biggest offshore oil spill in U.S. History. Here is a bundle of resources to help your students make sense of this disaster and begin the healing process.
Oil Spill By Numbers
This infographic from PBS puts the BP oil spill in perspective. Please note the May 3, 2010 press date. On July 15, 2010 a 75-ton cap over the well shut off the leak. Up to 184 gallons of oil have leaked into the Gulf of Mexico.
DISCOVER: PBS - Gulf Oil Spill Facts and Figures
Drill Baby Drill Lesson Plan
Take a stand on offshore drilling policies. From PBS, this two-part lesson plan for middle and high school students explores President Obama's policy on offshore oil exploration. Costs and benefits of this policy are assessed through the perspectives of supporters and critics.
VISIT: PBS - Drill Baby Drill
50 Ways to Stop an Oil Leak
By June 2, 2010, BP had received 31,600 suggestions from members of the public on how to cap the oil well and deal with the oil spill. In this article from the BBC, Professor Iraj Ershaghi, director of petroleum engineering at the University of Southern California, gives his expert verdict on a select group of citizen proposals.
EXPLORE: BBC - The Oil Spill, Your Solutions
The above resources accompany the August 2010 YES! Education Connection Newsletter
READ NEWSLETTER: Lessons to celebrate and protect clean, fresh water
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