Contact Information

Guide Leaders are more than welcome to 'borrow' material or meeting plans, but please drop me a line to let me know that you used the material, and what didn't work out / worked out well!

ravens (dot) rook (at) gmail (dot) com


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Water Conservation

Program covered:

o Conservation Badge #3, 6, 7, & 8
o Water Badge
o Ecology Badge #3
o Discovering You – Understand How to be Responsible #5
o Beyond You – Learn about our Environment #2, 3
o Beyond You – Try New Things #4
o Beyond You – Discover Your Community #2

Materials Required:

o Olive Oil
o Four tin foil pie plates
o Dish detergent
o Four empty cups
o Serviettes
o Sponges
o Drinking Straws
o Bingo Cards
o Blue or red food coloring - Watch out for stains!
o Vanilla ice cream
o Clear soda pop
o Crushed ice
o Variety of colored cake decoration sprinkles and sugars
o Clear plastic cups

Opening Song: Singing in the Rain

Fruit Salad on Water Game

Parts depending on how many girls your unit has.
1) Snow 2) Fog 3) Sleet 4) Hail 5) Thunder

Have all the girls except one sit on chairs in a circle. The extra girl is the caller and she stands in the middle of the circle. Each girl is given the name of one of the above water parts (including the caller). The caller then yells out one of the parts (ex. HAIL!) and everyone with that name and the caller must get up and rush to find a new seat. The girl left standing is the new caller. She now yells out another part and the seats change again. If RAIN is called, everyone gets up and moves to a new seat.
With older girls, they must move at least three seats away.

Oil Spill Game

Divide the girls into small groups. Each group gets:

  • 1 pie plate/bowl/basin/etc. of water (the "ocean")
  • 1 cup with a small amount of dish detergent
  • 1 empty cup
  • 1-2 paper napkins (serviettes)
  • 1-2 small sponges
  • 1-2 drinking straws

A leader pours an "oil spill" (darkly coloured oil, eg. olive oil, looks best) onto each group's "ocean". The group's task is to clean up the spill. For older girls, you can have leaders be "weather" (blowing through a straw = wind, a water gun = rain), interfering with the girls' progress. After a set period of time, have the girls get together to discuss what did or didn't work for them. It gives them a whole new understanding of how difficult it really is to clean up an oil spill.

Put one or two drops of liquid dish soap in the oil. What happens? When you put a drop of soap into the water, the oil scatters quickly to the edges of the dish. Normally, water has surface tension, meaning that the water molecules try to stick together. The soap breaks the connection between water molecules so that they move away from each other, radiating outwards from the soap. As they go, they carry the oil with them to the outer edges of the dish. This might make the water look clean, but is it really? If this were an oil spill in an ocean, the edges of the dish would be a shoreline. Covering it with oil would harm all kinds of plants and animals. And soap is a pollutant too, just like oil.

Water Wonders Bingo

Each girl gets a bingo sheet like the one reproduced below. Then the girls must get other Guides or leaders to sign off on squares that identify something water-friendly that that person does. First girl with a complete card wins!

Tries to conserve water in the home
Knows a female scientist
Uses salt when bringing a pot of water to boil
Has taken science classes in school
Has been inside a greenhouse
Enjoys gardening
Has made her own bubble solution
Has visited a water treatment plant
Has been water-skiing
Has been on a sailboat
Has been to Niagara Falls
Knows someone in a water-related career
Does not let the water run while washing dishes
Drinks seltzer water
Does not let the water run when brushing teeth
Has been to the Ocean
Can name all five oceans
Has taken swimming lessons
Likes to do science activities with her troop
Drinks 6-8 glasses of water every day
Has used a well
Has experienced a drought season
Knows how clouds are formed
Has been in a canoe

Edible Parfaits
(Page 19 – Science in a Box – BC Program Committee 2003)

This activity is a fun and easy way to understand the geology of an aquifer. You will build your own edible aquifer; learn about confining layers, contamination, recharge and water tables.

You’ll need:
o Blue or red food coloring - Watch out for stains!
o Vanilla ice cream
o Clear soda pop
o Crushed ice
o Drinking straws
o Variety of colored cake decoration sprinkles and sugars
o Clear plastic cups (use new ones, not the ones from the Science Box)

1. Fill a clear plastic cup 1/3 full with crushed ice (represents gravels and soils).
2. Add enough soda to just cover the ice.
3. Add a layer of ice cream to serve as a "confining layer" over the water-filled aquifer.
4. Then add more crushed ice on top of the "confining layer”.
5. Coloured sugars and sprinkles represent soils and should be sprinkled over the top to create the porous top layer.
6. Now add the food colouring to the soda. The food coloring represents contamination. Watch what happens when it is poured on the top of the "aquifer." Keep in mind that the same thing happens when contaminants are spilled on the earth’s surface.
7. Using your straw, drill a well into the center of your aquifer.
8. Slowly begin to pump the well by sucking on the straw. Watch the decline in the water table.
9. Notice how the contaminants can get sucked into the well area and end up in the groundwater by leaking through the confining layer.
10. Now recharge your aquifer by adding more soda, which represents a rain shower.

Closing Song: Barges

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