With links to weather, climate, energy and public health, water is one of today's most important environmental topics. In addition to covering 70% of the Earth's surface and being vital to survival, water is a key element in weather and climate systems. Water has an intimate connection with energy as generating power consumes 3 percent of our nation's water annually and 13 percent of the energy produced in this country each year is used to treat, transport and heat our water.
The interdisciplinary nature of water provides an excellent context for study in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) and other subjects. Conducting water audits of the school building empowers students to employ math and engineering concepts in an investigation that is meaningful to them, while exploring technologies for water conservation. Water quality monitoring projects connect students with local natural spaces and watersheds and allows them to make a hands-on contribution to real-world science.
Below, we outline projects and activities organized by grade-level as well as resources that engage students in STEM learning around water resources.