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How Much Water can we save

What Does It Mean To Be Green

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We’re loving this weeks theme for the readathon with MeMeTales as it really is a subject dear to my heart – The Earth and Being Green.  With two book choices this week What does it mean to be green and Lets Go Chipper Into The Great Outdoors. I loved both but deciding which was most suitable for J and T I decided that What Does it mean to be green was the best.

One of the things talked about in the book is saving water – now back when I was a teacher one of my first year at secondary school units of work in computers was based all around saving water and the theme that I did for one of the desk top publishing pieces was brushing teeth and how to save water with it.

Now creating a poster really isn’t an option with J’s age so instead we did a practical activity – or our own mini science experiment if you will.

How to work out how much water you can save whilst brushing your teeth

Now you’ve heard that you can save water whilst brushing your teeth by switching the tap on and off – well J is just getting into brushing his teeth himself and we’re working on teaching him about this so I thought a great activity would be to show him how why it’s important that we shut off the tap whilst we clean our teeth.

teaching preschoolers about time using kitchen timers

I set our kitchen timer for 2 minutes – the time that we TRY to get J to brush his teeth for – does he do it for 2 minutes! NO! but the idea is there. Then we ran the tap for the 2 minutes – not on full flow but enough that it constantly ran as our bathroom tap would. He stood and watched it run.

saving water whilst brushing teeth experiment

When the two minutes were up J then proceeded to empty the water down the sink one cup at the time – this was a great activity to get him counting and also practising his pouring skills. We weren’t very accurate with our measuring but at 35 months I felt it was more important that we got an arbitrary value of how much water a flowing tap for two minutes would be – Incidentally it’s 30 beakers of water (I feel the need to insert a :O smiley in there) and our washing up bowl was mostly filled up.

measuring water quantities for preschoolers and toddlers

We then had great fun turning the tap on and off for the next two minutes even with it being turned on full power each time the bowl was no where near as full as it was with it flowing constantly.

how to save water

When the two minutes were up – J emptied the bowl with his cup and in total it was 3 cups – so 1/10th of the amount of water used as having the tap flowing the whole time.

J loved doing this experiment and as he’s told Rainy Day Dad “TURN IT OFF” this evening I guess the message has gone in.


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  2. That is really a great way to teach kids how to save that precious resource. After all, the idea will be better inculcated if they see it for themselves.

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