Making Water Safe

Scripture: Genesis 5-9

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will review the story of Noah and the Ark
  • Students will learn/review the importance of clean drinking water
  • Students will learn to build a water still and a water filter. (Please note – Water should still be boiled to purify it before attempting to ingest it in any way.)

Guiding Question: How can I collect water in the wilderness and filter out visible impurities?

Materials: empty two liter bottle (one for each filter), pebbles, sand, charcoal, cloth, sheet of plastic, container, hose/tubing, trowel, water with obvious impurities (leaves, grass. etc.)

Procedure: Review the story of Noah and the Ark. Discuss with the students how important it would be for Noah and his family to find clean drinking water after the Flood. Review safe water facts. (link to the Water Made Me Sick activity) Tell students sometimes in the wilderness, the problem is finding any water at all to drink. While often we an take modern devices with us to purify water, sometimes we can’t.

Have students build a water still. (link) How much water did you water still produce? How long did it take? If you added plants to the top of your still, did it produce water more quickly? Explain to students that water in the wilderness can have two types of things that can make you sick – contaminants you can see and those you can see only with a microscope. Today they will learn how to get rid of the contaminants they can see. Have students build a bottle water filter (link) and use it to filter out the contaminated water you provide. (Caution students the water still has contaminants they can only see with a microscope. These must be killed by boiling the water and cooling it before using it for drinking or cooking.)

Additional Question: What is the most effective way to filter visible contaminants out of water?

Supplemental Activity: Find other ways to filter visible contaminants out of water and compare the resulting water to see which filtered the water the best. (Ex: single layer filter, cloth filter, fiberfill filter, grass filter etc.)

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