How To: Lead a Clean Water Awareness Exercise

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Imagine what it would be like if you were forced to rely on the bodies of water near your house to help you cook, do laundry, even simply drink water. Raise awareness with your classmates by conducting this exercise that educates people about the struggle to find water in the developing world.

  1. Go outside of your school and find the nearest available, standing water source you can. This could be a
    • pond
    • stream
    • creek
    • lake
    • large puddle
    Presumably, if you lived in the developing world, this would be the closest local water source you had access to and, as such, this would be the water that you would use for drinking, cooking, etc.
  2. Collect samples of that water in sterile containers and seal them.
  3. Observe the water sample. What visible contaminants can you see?
    • Dirt & Mud?
    • Sediment?
    • Algae?
    • Living Organisms?
  4. Take the container to a science classroom at school. Pour a small amount of the sample water into Petri Dishes. Examine the collected water under the microscope to observe and see if there are even smaller, living, microorganisms or bacteria that you couldn't see with your naked eye.
  5. Leave the water in the Petri Dishes for one week. Return them to the Microscope and observe what has changed. Is there new growth?
  6. Talk with your group about what it would be like to drink this water. Every day, 4,400 children die of easily-preventable, water-bourne diseases as a result of lack of access to safe water.

Created by Seth Maxwell, Do Something Awards Finalist and President & CEO of The Thirst Project.

Check out these water facts. GO