Many people simply turn on a faucet or flush a toilet without thinking about how that water got there, or where it goes after it has been used. In today’s society, it’s very easy to take for granted that until the mid-1800s most families in the United States were pumping or hauling their own water for drinking, bathing, cooking, and more. Even today, access to clean water and sanitation services are still issues for people around the world.

The water sector needs strong public support to fulfill its crucial role in society. The key to this support is public education. And while this effort should start at a young age, education is a life-long endeavor. Our webinar shows how water professionals can engage with elementary-age students, college-age students, and other adults through several outreach activities to highlight the importance of water protection, treatment, and transport in their communities.  It will also provide actionable steps on how to be informed and get involved—as a student, consumer, potential water professional, and valuable member of society.

Speakers and Contributors: Ashley Warren, MWRD; Bashar Al-Daomi, Portland State University; Becca Erickson, South Platte Renew; Brian Hill, WEF; Jen Cobb, Henrico County; Joe Massimo, SUEZ; Palencia Mobley, Detroit Water & Sewerage Department; Paula Monaco, Plummer Associates; Peter Buehlmann, Brown and Caldwell; Wes Merkle, TriCo Regional Sewer Utility

This webcast is second in a five part Community Outreach Webcast Series focusing on different outreach activities. The webcast series and was developed as part of the final project for the Water Leadership Institute (WLI). 

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The Big Drip: Inspiring the Future Stewards of Water

Water makes the world go round - Teaching Elementary Students about Water

About 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered in water, yet only 2.5% is freshwater, and less than 1% of that is available for drinking! Many people simply turn on a faucet or flush a toilet without thinking about how that water got there, or where it goes after it has been used. In today’s society, it’s very easy to take for granted that until the mid-1800s most families in the United States were pumping or hauling their own water for drinking, bathing, cooking, and more. Even today, access to clean water and sanitation services are still issues for people around the world. Before people are able to drink water, and before it can be released back into the environment, it must be treated to protect life.

The goal of this presentation is to discuss how to utilize Outreach Activities created by water industry members that are targeted toward elementary school aged students. These Outreach Activities will teach participants about the treatment and transport of water as well as discuss high-level concepts to help students become aware of historic, current, and future challenges in the water sector. Students will develop an understanding of the many uses of water, protection of the environment and public health, as well as gain exposure to the diverse careers in the water sector. These activities will challenge students to consider their role in the water sector, and how they can support the water sector today and in the future.

 

Key learning objectives: 

  1. Understand how water gets to your faucet
  2. Understand what happens to wastewater when it goes down the sink, toilet, or storm drains
  3. Why treating the water before you drink it or before you discharge it promotes the health of us, and the environment as a whole
  4. Understand the history and future challenges of water
  5. Understand the many uses of water (making products, energy, providing services)

A Lifelong Journey of Water Education: Going with the Flow

The water sector needs strong public support to fulfill its crucial role in society. The key to this support is public education. And while this effort should start at a young age, education is a life-long endeavor. Our webinar shows how water professionals can engage with college-age students and other adults to highlight the importance of water and wastewater infrastructure in their communities and to provide actionable steps on how to be informed and get involved—as a consumer, a taxpayer, a potential water professional, and a member of society.