This podcast is part of the series: Planet H2O
McWane Science Center
In this lesson, the students are instructed to imagine that they are in control of a small country. They are shown a pitcher that contains their country’s water supply. They are then asked to make decisions on where the water should go. The students are given small containers that represent their needs and demands for water. Water is distributed from the supply pitcher for each one of their demands.
About 2/3 of our water supplies goes to agriculture and food production. Two-thirds (2/3) of the water from the supply pitcher is poured into the “agriculture” container. Students then list other demands...drinking water, water for cleaning, etc. Students are then presented with other factors that will influence their supply and demand. An environmental factor, such as a drought, will mean that the affected part of the country will have an increased demand (water is distributed from the supply pitcher). A great increase in the human population in another part of the country will increase their demand as well (water is distributed from the supply pitcher). When the supply pitcher is almost empty, the topic of water scarcity arises. Water scarcity occurs when the demand for water out paces the supply and causes water shortages.