Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Full STEAM Ahead: Can you undo water pollution?

Can you undo water pollution?
First Grade Lesson Plan
Teacher: Mrs. Yandell
Date: 11/30/16

Overview & Purpose

The first graders continue to learn about different types of communities and community helpers.  In this activity, students will learn about water pollution and  how they can help prevent oil spills.  Students will have a hands on opportunity to see how oil and other pollutants affect our environment, and decide if you can truly undo water pollution.    

Education Standards

  1. SS:N:1.4 The students will describe how the work that people do (police officer, fire fighter, soldier, mail carrier, baker, farmer, doctor, and teacher) benefits a neighborhood.


  1. How pollution affects our neighborhoods and communities?
  2. How can we prevent pollution?
  3. What type of community helpers research new ways to prevent pollution?
  4. Can you undo water pollution?

Materials Needed

  1. Garbage
  2. “Oil Spill” book
  3. Plastic containers
  4. Water
  5. Cooking Oil
  6. Gloves, Strainer, Coffee filter


Steps to check for student understanding
  1. Did your group work well together?
  2. Were you able to undo the water pollution?
  3. How can we prevent water pollution in our communities?


Describe activity that will reinforce the lesson
In this activity, we will start by reading the book “Oil Spill.”  We will discuss ways to prevent pollution in our community, and how we can be caretakers of our environment.  In groups, students will have a hands on opportunity to try and undo water pollution.  

Adapted by giron.life.blogspot.com

Can You Undo Water Pollution? Recap by Jessica Yandell

This STEAM activity was too much fun, but I must say it was a little messy! One of the first grade integrated unit topics is on community helpers, which is why I thought it would be a good idea to show the students how scientists work hard to protect our community from pollution.  After we read the story “Oil Spill,” we learned that we do not have to be scientist to help prevent pollution, but that we can be caretakers of our community just by throwing away trash in proper containers and by turning off our lights to save electricity.  I love that this lesson integrates literature, social studies and science all in one activity!  My suggestion is to do this activity outside if possible!

After trying hard to clean their polluted water, our kids realized it is almost impossible to get all of the oil out of the water.  They agreed it is our responsibility to be caretakers of our community and prevent pollution!

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