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What's Up with the Water Cycle?

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Keywords: water cycle
Subject(s): Science, Earth Science
Grades 1 through 2
School: Dozier Elementary School, Erath, LA
Planned By: Pamela Cheek
Original Author: Pamela Cheek, Erath
Purpose: Students would learn the steps of the water cycle, then film the process and explain it using a flip camera.


•Express data in a variety of ways by constructing illustrations, graphs, charts, tables, concept maps, and oral and written explanations as appropriate (SI-E-A5) (SI-E-B4)

•Use a variety of appropriate formats to describe procedures and to express ideas about demonstrations or experiments (e.g., drawings, journals, reports, presentations, exhibitions, portfolios) (SI-E-A6)

•Give examples of how the Sun affects Earth’s processes (e.g., weather, water cycle) (ESS-E-B5)

Time: 3-4 Days


1. Explain the water cycle to students. (Could use PowerPoint, Flip charts, books, etc.) Link with water cycle powerpoints is listed. Use the two interactive links with water cycle models to explain the process Animated Water Cycle and Crickweb Animated Water Cycle)

2. The teacher will model drawing the water cycle. Then the students will write the steps for the water cycle on a sheet of paper and illustrate it.

•water on ground

3. Next, students will create a powerpoint slide show that shows the process of the water cycle. Pictures chosen to insert have to be appropriate with the text.

NOTE: Student cameras may be used for students to take their own photographs representing the water cycle.

Another option: . If a computer lab isn't available for PowerPoint work, other options for center work are below.

•Put students in computer center (depending on amount of computers in the classroom.

•While students are in the computer centers, the teacher may continue doing Water Cycle lesson with the science book or using online lessons.

•Students and/or teacher can read "weather" books gathered by the teacher.
•Write weather stories about different types of weather.
.•Write non fiction weather stories.
•Write fictional weather stories
•Write a paragraph about the steps of the water cycle.
•Show weather powerpoints (Wandering Wanda's Weather Powepoints.)
•Groups could be working with flip camera video (filming)

4. Flip Camera Lesson (Whole class or in groups)

•Step 1: Students would film water on the ground.
•Step 2: Film about 15 minutes later to see if any of the water has evaporated.
•Step 3: Film clouds and explain that evaporated water causes the clouds to form.
•Step 4: Film a raining segment.

NOTE: The filming may not all occur in one day.

The students will gain knowledge of the water cycle process from experiencing the process hands on using the flip camera (and then viewing it as a class.)

Having a hands on lesson for the water cycle is extremely effective for the students. The students are not being "told" about the water cycle. They are now experiencing it.

Assessment: Student PowerPoint (and/or group videos)
Teacher may opt to do just a powerpoint or just a video if time is limited.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Writing, Science
Links: Vermilion Parish Weather PowerPoints to share (Scroll down to weather)
Example lesson
Animated Water Cycle
Many Water Cycle PowerPoints (Pete's PPT Station)
Crickweb Interactive: Water Cycle
Materials: Point and Shoot, Digital Cameras, Flip Video, Video Cameras