• Overview
  • Lesson Preview
  • Teaching Materials
  • Background
  • Learning Standards
  • Feedback
  • Credits
  • Acknowledgments
  • Version Notes
  • Overview
  • Lesson Preview
  • Teaching Materials
  • Background
  • Learning Standards
  • Feedback
  • Credits
  • Acknowledgments
  • Version Notes
English (NZ)

Pacific H2O

A Choose-Your-Own STEM Adventure

A Choose-Your-Own STEM Adventure
Galactic_PolyMath_First_Sec_Mobile_Info
The Gist:

Students will gain a new appreciation for water as they reflect, mind-map, embody different STEM roles, and perform a choose-your-own adventure chemistry lab. Throughout, they will be exposed to Pacific languages, proverbs, and STEM solutions in this unique learning experience.

Target Subject:
Science
Grades:
9-13
Estimated Time:
4 x 45min classes
Target Subject:
Science
Grades:
9-13
Estimated Time:
4 x 45min classes
Subject breakdown by standard alignments:Subject breakdown by standard alignments
Subject breakdown by standard alignments
Subject breakdown by standard alignments

Driving Question(s):

  1. In what ways do you and your community rely on clean water?
  2. What technologies do engineers use to purify water and how can we use them in the classroom?
  3. How do Pacific Island nations, surrounded by saltwater, provide fresh, clean water to the public?

Hook(s):

Lessons are threaded with Pacific languages and perspectives that will fascinate and engage students. Students will enjoy developing mind maps about water, doing a lab in their own way, with the choose-your-own-adventure app in lesson 2, and having many opportunities to connect content to Pacific cultures and real world problems.

Keywords:
engineeringwaterSTEMSTEAMlab experimentblended learningAAPIAANHPI Heritage Month
For Lesson 0
PacificH2O Walk-Through

This walk-through video briefly covers each lesson and how to access materials.

by Galactic Polymath
For Lesson 1
Mind map of water from a Niuean STEM Professional

This example helps students deepen their own mind maps about the significance of water.

by Galactic Polymath
For Lesson 2
PacificH2O Interactive Lab

A Choose-Your-Own Adventure app that mediates a blended learning lab. Students identify & remove impurities in water samples as they embody different STEM career roles.

by Galactic Polymath
For Lesson 2
Playlist: PacificH2O Lab Videos

These short videos are woven into the PacificH2O Interactive Lab App. They demo lab setups and provide engineering background.

by Shallu Verma
  • PacificH2O Walk-Through
  • PacificH2O Interactive Lab
  • Playlist: PacificH2O Lab Videos

4 x ~50 min

Available Grade Bands

Available Teaching Environments

Learning Objectives

Students will able to...

  1. Explore their personal values and experiences related to water and connect them to the importance of engineering clean water in the Pacific.

  2. Examine the value of water through a Pacific cultural lens.

Materials for Grades 9-13
  1. Presentation (Lesson 1)

    Need: WiFi, Computer, Projector, Sound

    lesson_tile
  2. Teacher Worksheet (Lesson 1)

    Print 1

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  3. Student Worksheet (Lesson 1)

    Print 1 Per Student

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  4. Glossary of Terms (Lesson 1)

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  5. Student Handout (Lesson 1)

    Classroom Set (Detailed Mindmap Example from a STEM professional)

    lesson_tile
Steps & Flow

10 min: Engage

1.

What is a Mind Map?

1.

What is a Mind Map?

Through examples and a supporting video, students will learn what a mind map is and how it connects to the topic of water.

The lesson 1 slideshow will walk you through the entire lesson. Additionally, the teacher worksheet has several mind-mapping tips.

  • Mind map: a diagram that visually organizes information to show relationships among connected concepts.

10 min: Explore

2.

Create Your Mind Map

2.

Create Your Mind Map

Students will create a mind map that represents their connection to water.

Questions to prompt student thinking:

  • How do you use water daily?
  • What aspects of your life rely on clean water?
  • How does your family / community rely on water?

This fun and creative exercise would be further supported if teachers tried it for themselves ahead of time!

10 min: Explain

3.

Share Your Mind Map

3.

Share Your Mind Map

Students will explain their thinking with the class and view their classmates' approach to the exercise.

10 min: Elaborate

4.

Viewing the Mind Map of a Pacific STEM Professional

4.

Viewing the Mind Map of a Pacific STEM Professional

Students will elaborate on their thinking about water while viewing an elaborate mind map from a maritime manager in Niue.

Print copies of the student handout for this part of the lesson.

5 min: Evaluate

5.

Reflect

5.

Reflect

Students will reflect on the lesson and think about a prompt that primes them for the next lesson.

Going Further

Ideas and resources for deepening learning on this topic.

  1. Securing Nauru's water lifeline for the most vulnerable people

    Help students understand water challenges in the Pacific through the case study of Nauru

,
This unit is under construction. Please send your thoughts to feedback@galacticpolymath.com! And be sure to sign up for emails to get notified when the final version is released.
Learning Objectives

Students will able to...

  1. Examine the value of water through a Pacific cultural lens.

  2. Understand factors that limit access to clean water in the Pacific.

  3. Conduct tests and treatments on a sample of contaminated water using laboratory equipment.

  4. Embody the role of a STEM professional and collaborate with a team to make complex decisions in the narrative of the lab's website.

Materials for Grades 9-13
  1. Presentation (Lesson 2)

    Need: WiFi, Computer, Projector, Sound

    lesson_tile
  2. Teacher Preparation Doc (Lesson 2)

    Read before lab

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  3. Student Worksheet (Lesson 2)

    Print 1 Per Student

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  4. Student Lab Procedures (Lesson 2)

    Print 1 Per Group

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  5. Teacher Lab Procedures (Lesson 2)

    Read before lab

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Steps & Flow

5 min: Introduction

1.

What is a Blended Lab?

1.

What is a Blended Lab?

After a quick review of the previous lesson, students will learn about how the blended lab is structured and how to document their work.

  • Blended lab: Students making decisions in a web app and executing their decisions using lab equipment and supplies.

45 min: Engineer-Your-Adventure

2.

Conduct the Lab

2.

Conduct the Lab

Students work in teams to investigate a contaminated water sample and perform a treatment solution. Teams will create their own unique problem-solving path as they make decisions in the app and execute them in the lab.

Note: Each group will move at a different pace through the blended lab. If some groups are waiting for an assay or treatment, they can explore the further learning resources located on the back page of their lab notebook worksheet.

5 min: Wrap Up

3.

Clean Up & Finalize Lab Notebook

3.

Clean Up & Finalize Lab Notebook

Students clean up their workspace and finish recording information about their decision-making.

Going Further

Ideas and resources for deepening learning on this topic.

  1. Student Engineers in Tonga

    This article describes how student engineers from University of Canterbury helped bring clean water to schools in Tonga.

  2. UV-Treated Drinking Water in Niue

    Students can explore how a different treatment technology, UV sterilisation, was installed in villages of Niue.

  3. A Natural Coagulant Protein from Coconuts (Cocos nucifera)

    This scientific article describes the properties of a natural coagulant protein extracted from coconut and its water treatment potential.

,
This unit is under construction. Please send your thoughts to feedback@galacticpolymath.com! And be sure to sign up for emails to get notified when the final version is released.
Learning Objectives

Students will able to...

  1. Examine the value of water through a Pacific cultural lens.

  2. Understand factors that limit access to clean water in the Pacific.

  3. Analyze text with a graphic organizer to define an engineering problem, determine the solution, and assess the solution's suitability in relation to the people in need.

Materials for Grades 9-13
  1. Teacher Key to Student Handout (Lesson 3)

    lesson_tile
  2. Presentation (Lesson 3)

    Need: WiFi, Computer, Projector, Sound

    lesson_tile
  3. Teacher Guide (Lesson 3)

    lesson_tile
  4. Student Handout (Lesson 3)

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Steps & Flow

15 min: Reflect

1.

Summarize and Share Lab Insights

1.

Summarize and Share Lab Insights

Working with the same lab group, students prepare answers to reflection questions about their lab process. Each lab group shares their insights with a different group.

15 min: Explore

2.

Analyse a Resource

2.

Analyse a Resource

Students analyse a resource that describes a water source in a Pacific community.

15 min: Evalaute

3.

Propose Your Solution

3.

Propose Your Solution

Relying on their knowledge from the lab and information from the resource, students propose their solution by completing a graphic organiser and process flow diagram.

Going Further

Ideas and resources for deepening learning on this topic.

  1. University of Canterbury Engineering Students Propose Their Solution

    This video captures a final engineering project where students proposed a comprehensive solution for residents of Tonga.

,
This unit is under construction. Please send your thoughts to feedback@galacticpolymath.com! And be sure to sign up for emails to get notified when the final version is released.
Materials for Grades 9-13
  1. Student Proverb Handout (Lesson 4)

    lesson_tile
  2. Teacher Proverb Handout (Lesson 4)

    lesson_tile
Steps & Flow

45 min: Reflect/Wrap-Up

1.

Samoan Water Proverbs

1.

Samoan Water Proverbs

Students can pick one Samoan proverb or reflect upon all three. After reading a proverb, students are invited to create a story or respond to reflection prompts.

Going Further

Ideas and resources for deepening learning on this topic.

  1. Water and Samoan Indigenous Reference

    Have students explore Samoan wisdom further by reading this keynote address from "Te Au o te Moana: Across Oceania" Symposium.

Connection to Research

Chemical and Process Engineers design processes for turning raw materials into useful products. The example is turning raw water (which might be polluted, contaminated, or salty) into pure water that can be used by people and communities for drinking, washing, and growing food.

At the University of Canterbury, our students take part in design projects to solve problems communities request solutions, too.

In this module, students get to play the role of STEM professionals solving a water purification problem based on real world challenges facing Pacific Island communities.

Research Background

Pacific Island nations (see basic background here) face unique challenges for sourcing clean drinking water for their populations. When it comes to providing clean drinking water for their communities, nations must address the specific challenges of geographic remoteness and small populations. Filtration techniques that work well for a mainland city with millions of people aren’t usually optimal solutions for a water treatment facility on a small island of several thousand people. Water treatment for a Pacific Island nation community should be optimised to serve relatively small populations without relying too heavily on off-island supplies which take weeks to arrive. Communities must also consider consistency of water access, budgetary constraints, and the environmental impact of their water treatment plan– this is no small problem to tackle.

Engineering Background

Water purification provides a valuable resource for human life. Providing clean water contributes to enabling people to live together in cities, live stable lives without thirst, and clean their clothes.

To purify water, scientists and engineers need to:

  1. identify the contaminants in the water
  2. determine a purification method for removing the contaminants
  3. engage with the community to find out what solutions work for them
  4. create a design that minimizes the costs of building and operating the water purification method
  5. build and operate the water purification system
  6. adapt to the community’s needs

The student journey in these lessons parallels this authentic engineering mindset.

Further Reading:

Scientific Articles

Click...?below to see how lessons address each standard.

Target Standard(s)

Skills and concepts directly taught or reinforced by this lesson

Dimension: Listening, Reading, and Viewing

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 3, students must integrate information across lab procedures and journalism to express a solution. In lesson 4, students will form ideas that integrate themes from Samoan proverbs with reflections of their own experiences.

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 3, students must integrate information across lab procedures and journalism to express a solution. In lesson 4, students will form ideas that integrate themes from Samoan proverbs with reflections of their own experiences.

Dimension: Nature of Science

How does the lesson address this standard?

Throughout all lessons, students investigate the importance of clean water, through their personal lens and through multiple Pacific island perspectives. In lessons 2 and 3, students work in teams to make decisions about clean water solutions.

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lessons 2 and 3, students work in teams to make decisions about clean water solutions, which incorporate multiple factors that must be considered. In lesson 3, students propose a solution and assess the suitability of the solution.

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 2, students gather scientific information about the quality of their water sample in a lab-based environment. Students take action by determining a water treatment solution but must consider socio-scientific issues such as monetary cost and environmental impact. Additionally, students grapple with how to allocate resources to benefit the community.

Dimension: Material World

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 2, students conduct a variety of tests on a given water sample to determine its characteristics, such as nitrate levels, acidity, salinity, turbidity, and presence of copper. After treating the water to remove its contaminants, students conduct follow-up tests to determine whether or not the treatment method was effective in removing contaminants.

Dimension: Social Studies

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 1, students view mind maps of Pacific STEM professionals who regularly respond to community challenges related to water. In lessons 2 and 3, students work in teams to make decisions about clean water solutions, which addresses the community challenge of water availability.

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lessons 2 and 3, students analyse traditional and innovative water treatment technologies and the benefits and costs that are associated with each method.

How does the lesson address this standard?

Throughout all lessons, students investigate the importance of clean water, a fundamental resource. In lessons 2 and 3, students grapple with the environmental, social, and sustainability implications of various clean water solutions.

Connected Standard(s)

Skills and concepts reviewed or hinted at in this lesson (for building upon)

Dimension: Listening, Reading, and Viewing

How does the lesson address this standard?

Students analyse text across a variety of sources during all four lessons. In lesson 1, students analyse text in mind maps. In lesson 2, students analyse text in lab procedures and an online app. In lesson 3, students analyse journalism sources and in lesson 4, students analyse Samoan proverbs and interpretations.

How does the lesson address this standard?

Students analyse text across a variety of sources during all four lessons. In lesson 1, students analyse text in mind maps. In lesson 2, students analyse text in lab procedures and an online app. In lesson 3, students analyse journalism sources and in lesson 4, students analyse Samoan proverbs and interpretations.

Dimension: Material World

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 2, students must measure water quality characteristics and determine relevant treatmet technologies. Additionally, they will learn about sources of water contaminants and generate a hypothesis that explains the observed contaminant(s) of their water sample.

Dimension: Nature of Science

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 2, students measure water quality characteristics and determine relevant treatment methods which involve a variety of scientific symbols, conventions, and vocabulary.

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 2, students work in teams to ask questions about a given water sample and carry out appropriate tests to develop explanations about their sample.

How does the lesson address this standard?

In lesson 2, students measure water quality characteristics and determine relevant treatment methods which involve a variety of scientific symbols, conventions, and vocabulary.

Please let us know how it went with your class!

We want to know what you (and/or your students) think!

Share your feedback in < 5 min with these forms:

  • Stephanie Rapciak: Led the project and developed all curricular materials
  • Madelyn Leembruggen: Spearheaded app development and contributed to all curricular materials
  • Matt Wilkins: Directed app UX/UI and contributed to all curricular materials
  • Matthew Cowan: Created water treatment videos and provided engineering expertise
  • Ashalyna Noa: Served as a Pacific liaison and offered cultural expertise
  • Christina Howat: Developed lab procedures and created lab videos
  • Shallu Verma: Developed lab procedures, created and edited lab videos
Samoan Cultural Consultant

Provided Samoan proverbs and recordings

Solomon Islands Cultural Consultant

Provided Solomon Islands Pijin proverbs

Artist

Created original graphic artwork

Classroom Beta Tester

Tested early versions of materials and provided lots of valuable feedback!

Web Developer

Provided technical support for app development

STEM Consultant

Provided mind map examples and engineering expertise

Major Release Beta

0.1.0 Lesson initialized

December 08, 2023

Major Release 1

1.0.0 Let's Go!

May 29, 2024

Major improvements to app; first complete build of unit materials.

1.1.0 Richer media

June 5, 2024

Added all 15 supporting videos to the Choose-Your-Own-Adventure app, along with major CSS styling improvements.

1.1.1 Updated Background

June 5, 2024