Operation Water Drop Taking It Further Problem-Based Learning Lesson

Grades: 4-12

1. The first thing you are going to want to do with your Operation Water Drop kit is to use it. Test the water samples you have been given and your local drinking water (as well as three other water samples such as urban, rural and raw water, in the case of High School Operation Water Drop kits) with the kit’s contents. Record these test results.

2. Now that the test results have been gathered, it’s time to compare them. Compare your test results to the Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality and see if your test results agree or disagree with the guidelines. These next 3 steps are only followed if some of the test results for your local water sample (and, in the case of High School Operation Water Drop kits, your rural and urban water samples) do not meet guidelines.

3. If some of your results do not meet guidelines, you first have to ask why that might be. Does the water look odd? Does it have a smell? Did you do the test wrong? Go through all variables before moving on.

4. Tell your teacher that your test results are not meeting guidelines and then discuss these findings with your class. What should you do about it? Should you contact your city council/MLA/MP? Should you inform others in your community?

5. Follow through with your plans discussed in class for dealing with the situation. These next steps are followed regardless of whether the test results met guidelines.

6. Discuss why Canada has GUIDELINES for drinking water quality rather than regulations or standards. Be sure to include the difference between guidelines and regulations or standards in the discussion.

7. Learn about some rural and First Nation communities which do not have safe drinking water. Research how long some of these communities have been under boil water advisories or do not drink orders.

8. Share what you have learned with others in your school, community, area, province and nation. Challenge yourselves to speak out for those Canadians who do not have safe drinking water.