Education leads to effective and sustained water conservation practices. Ensuring that all ages are aware of the importance of water conservation is essential for establishing conservation norms. Resources are available to assist with conservation education.
Activities for students
To find out what you can do to conserve water, follow the links for interactive activities that teach more about the water cycle and water conservation.
- WaterSense Game - tests your water sense through a fun game
- The Pollution Control Agency (PCA) hosts a series of We Are Water videos on human connections with water.
- Interactive water cycle diagram - from the U.S. Geological Survey
- Water Page - a child-oriented webpage with more information on water conservation and strategies for saving water
- The University of Minnesota Watershed Game can be purchased from the website or can be borrowed by contacting [email protected]
- PBS Water Conservation Lesson Plan Grades 6-8
Resources for educators
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture provides a series of YouTube videos and short animations on groundwater and nitrate movement, with a special focus on Southeast Minnesota.
NASA's Precipitation Education activity was developed to get students thinking about the many ways that people use freshwater, and how we can conserver this precious and fundamental natural resource.
Project WET (Water Education for Today) is an international, interdisciplinary, water-science education program used by a variety of water users. Minnesota Project WET improves understanding of water resources by providing trainings, educational materials and guidance to individuals or groups
Water Guardians is an educational program brought to you by H2O for Life. It teaches students about the global water crisis and how we can create change locally, together. Video features an adventure down the mighty Mississippi River from Lake Itasca to the Gulf of Mexico.
The We Are Water MN program deepens connections between the humanities and water through a network of partnerships, a traveling exhibit, and public events. The site includes an Educator Handbook and additional resources.
WaterSense for Kids from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has teaching guides and activity sheets for Fix-A-Leak Week and for general information on subjects like the water cycle.
The Metropolitan Council water conservation toolbox has educational resources for both adults and children including teaching materials:
- Pictures and maps
- Links to further water science resources
- Curriculum guides on water conservation
The Water Science School from the U.S. Geological Survey has a list of resources for water education and conservation. Primarily directed towards an adult audience, these resources cover topics ranging from aquifer basics to water quality indicators. These resources include multimedia presentations and videos.
The University of Minnesota Water Resources Center has a variety of water conservation materials for homeowners, educators, and community leaders.
What you can do to conserve!
By following some of the suggestions below, you can start making a difference right away.
- Water your yard wisely, see University of Minnesota Water Wisely.
- Turn off the tap whenever possible: when you brush your teeth, between rinsing dishes or, better yet, scrap your dishes.
- Take short showers, not baths. Baths can use seven times more water. Taking showers under five minutes can reduce your water waste even more.
- Find and fix leaks. Leaks can waste hundreds of gallons. To check your toilet for a leak:
- Place colored dye in the tank above the bowl,
- Wait ten minutes.
- If the dye appears in the bowl without flushing the toilet, you have a leak.