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Lesson #3_ Water Audit 3rd-5th.docx
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Water Audit 3rd - 5th | Lesson 3, Series #4

Water Audit

Key Topics: Audit, Graphing, Adding, Multiplying, Conservation, Low Flow, Minutes, Gallons

Grade Levels: 3-6

Click here for #4 Series Description

Science Framework

Spanish Lesson Plan

Lesson Bridge:

Connect this lesson (3) to ‘$1 Million Orange’ (2) by urging students to think about some ways that water is wasted in the food industry. How is water wasted in our own homes? Close the loop by asking students if water savvy ancient agricultural methods could be applied to modern water usage.

Lesson Overview:  

In this lesson, students will quantify their at-home water usage and predict the amount used in a 24-hour period. We will discuss water conservation strategies both indoors and outdoors and students will consider ways in which these strategies can be adopted in daily life.

Suggested Activities and Learning Objectives by Grade Level:

Essential Question(s) that Connect CCCs and SEPs:



Activity Procedure:


Begin with a show and tell about different ways you use water. You can display on a table or in a bag items you use typically with water in your own life like: toothbrush, shampoo, tshirt, picture of your dog because you wash him, veggies that you water to grow in the garden, etc.


Ask students, “What ways do you use water everyday? Are there things I did not mention?” Ask them to share with an “elbow partner” first and then call on a few students to share as a group.

Write the following underlined question on your board and record student answers:  Do you have a prediction of how much water you use in one whole day? (24 hour period) Encourage students to think about a specific way they use water and try to get them to make an educated guess… Some may be silly and say “1 trillion billion gallons!


Each activity we do uses a different amount of water.  Water is measured in gallons, pints, quarts, liters, etc. Show different measuring containers to give the students a visual for what a gallon of water looks like. How much water do you think you use when you wash your hands? A cup of water. Two cups? All of these activities add up.

        Think, Pair, Share: Considering these measurements how many gallons of water do you guess you might use in a day?

In some places people don’t have running water in their homes and they have to walk long distances to get clean water for cooking, drinking, and doing their laundry and dishes.

Thumbs up/down: Do you think if you had to walk a long way you’d use more or less water?


  1. Review your Garden Agreements
  2. We are going to be doing something called a “water audit.” Does anyone know what the word audit means? Call on some students who may say things like “counting, measuring, documenting”... An audit is a calculation of an item, for us today it is water, and determining the total by estimating the usage from records.
  3. Tell students that you will be passing out sheets of paper and they are to write their names on it first but don’t fill it out yet. Hand them the Home Water Audit Handout.
  4. Explain how the worksheet works, that you will be multiplying the number of gallons typically used for each activity by the number of times you do that activity in a day.
  5. Go around and assist students who need additional help. *You can also do this activity together as a class


Call on students to share how many gallons of water they used in a day. If the students are old enough, see if you can figure out what the students daily water use is on average. Discuss the differences between the typical water usage of American households with those of desert regions of Africa and the Middle East. Ask students to brainstorm ways they can save water at home and in the garden. Write a list on the board of their ideas.

Extension Activities:

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