This module focuses on the importance of clean freshwater around the world. Using the children’s book One Well: The Story of Water on Earth as an anchor text, this unit builds on the background knowledge students developed in second grade regarding cycles in nature, in order to help them deepen their understanding of their overall dependence on earth’s limited water supply. In Unit 1, students will continue to build their geography and map-reading skills (begun in Module 1) by studying where water is found on earth and writing an on-demand paragraph to explain this. In the second half of Unit 1, students will examine the water cycle and watersheds. They will compare how different texts present similar information about the water cycle and water sheds.
In Unit 2, students will research challenges facing the earth’s clean water supply. Students will read from their central text, One Well: The Story of Water on Earth, to identify the specific details about pollution, access, and the demand for water, and then they will research one of these challenges in more depth. In Unit 3, students will use their knowledge to strengthen and support their opinion about “one thing” they can do to conserve, protect, or provide access to clean water in the world. Students will create a public service announcement (PSA), ideally learning how to use VoiceThread technology (a low-tech alternative is provided).
This final performance task centers on standards W.3.1, W.3.4, W.3.6, W.3.7, SL.3.4, and SL.3.5. (As an optional science extension, students can conduct fieldwork, such as simple water testing in local lakes or streams or visiting local water-treatment plants.)