Wednesday, November 2, 2016

It's Water-Wise Wednesday with Frannie the Fish {You be the Judge}

This week Frannie wants to share a fun activity that you can do with your class or with your extracurricular group! This activity, called "You be the Judge," is all about problem solving skills and water management.

Every day we make decisions - on what to wear, what to eat, etc. Many of the decisions we make each day have an impact on the environment, for example - using a reusable bag or a disposable one, taking a short shower or a long one. 

Water resource managers and community leaders also make decisions each day. Should water use be restricted? Should a certain amount of water be allocated to certain people or to everyone? In this activity, you will be provided scenarios and you get to decide who should get the water. You be the judge!

Here's what you need:
  • Pitcher filled with water
  • Cups for each participant
  • Water use cards - you can copy or print the cards found in the activity instructions or make posters representing different water uses
  • Scissors 
  • Poster board (optional)
  • Markers (optional)  

Here's what you do:   
1. Fill a pitcher with water. Make sure there is a limited amount of water so that not all cups can be filled.

2. Give each participant a cup.

3. Pass around the pitcher so each participant can fill their cup. A full cup represents enough water for the participants to meet their water needs.

4. Sometimes there is not enough water available for everyone's needs - in times of drought for example. Ask the participants to express how they feel.

5. Ask what they could do to make sure they all get water.

6. Repeat steps 1-5, this time with water allocations. Choose one or combine both of the following options:
  • First in time, first in right. Have the participants arrange themselves in order by their birth date.   
  • Use the water use cards found in the activity instructions to determine how the water is distributed. Randomly pass out the cards. Participants can use the information on the cards to discuss and campaign for more water or why others should get more and some should get less.

7. Discus the results, other ways the water could be allocated, and what the participants learned about water use
  • Those with more important uses get more. Who decides what's more important?
  • Equal shares, everyone gets some but some will get less than what they need.
  • Apply water restrictions and use water conservation practices to reduce the amount needed/used.
Share what you learned with The Groundwater Foundation!