Since launching our program in April, 2015 we have had a large number of schools get involved in the activity. In retrospect it was really obvious that schools would want to get involved in our program however we didn’t really anticipate this when we designed the early versions of our program. Over the last 18 months we’ve been watching and learning from all of those schools that have participated in our program and we have integrated all of that knowledge into our new School Lesson Plan!
Our new lesson plan not only provides your classroom with an opportunity to build and donate a life-changing water system but it provides teachers with a range of information and stimulating activities that can be used to educate kids about the global problem of clean water and sanitation. We worked carefully to ensure that our new lesson plan covers four of the seven general capabilities within the national curriculum. Specifically, we believe that our new lesson plan provides great learning opportunities within the areas of:
- Critical and creative thinking
- Personal and social capability
- Ethical understanding
- Intercultural understanding
The lesson plan has been designed with year 5 and 6 students in mind but could easily be adapted for an older or younger student group. For instance we have recently had a teacher who is planning to use the material for their year 8 geography class.
So far we have developed a detailed teaching work-book which integrates lesson content with engaging activities and guided discussions for students. We also have a range of audio-visual aides such as photos and videos to help teachers and students emotionally connect with the importance of the course content.
The course content has been structured around the following chapters:
- Cultural and Economic Awareness – we talk about global inequality and the concept of what a “developing nation” is.
- Clean Water and Sanitation – a variety of United Nations statistics are shared about this huge global problem.
- School in Uganda – we help students envisage what school is like in Uganda and what some of the differences might be.
- Health and Sanitation – we talk about the way sewerage and rubbish disposal is handled in Uganda and how this might differ to an Australian context.
- About our Water Filtration Systems – we explain what a “micron” is and talk about how our gravity fed, ceramic filter works.
- Access to Safe and Clean Drinking Water – we talk about sources of water and how these vary relative to wealthier countries.
- Personal Hygiene – practical advice that applies in both countries.
- Disposal of Rubbish – practical advice that applies in both countries.
- Pit Latrines – always a favourite, kids love hearing about toilets and how they work in other parts of the world.
- Safe Preparation and Storage of Food – practical advice that applies in both countries.
- Communicable Diseases – information about the most common problems associated with dirty water around the world.
- Your Sponsorship – explanation of the process for tracking where your system goes and the huge difference it will make to its recipients.
Our program is a flexible learning tool that has already been used in a variety of different ways within schools. Even if schools decide not to use the lesson plan that we have devised we are confident that there are a number of ways that our materials can be used to enhance the educational experience for students and teachers alike.
Ironically, our charity partner Lifewater actually has extensive experience working with school-aged kids. Prior to partnering with our program using a “whole of village” approach Lifewater had a major focus on providing clean water systems to schools throughout Africa. Each time they donated a new system to a school they would monitor how things went and would learn more each time. Early in the process they realised that educating parents, teachers and students about clean water and sanitation was critical to the successful roll-out of our filtration systems. They even developed a lesson plan themselves to help local teachers in Uganda to teach their students these life-changing skills. Our lesson plan draws heavily on the materials our charity partner uses with schools overseas which helps to provide teachers and students alike with a truly global perspective throughout the course.
Our lesson plan is available now and completely free of charge. If you are interested in getting a copy please just drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. All we ask is to let us know what school you are inquiring from, your name, email address and telephone number so that we can chat to you early in the new year and get some feedback.