Let’s make dirty water drinkable!
Some very excited and eager Water Explorers dared to enter the wonderful world of water today as they met at Umgeni Valley for their first Home School Nature Club meeting! The children will be following the resources and lessons of the Water Explorers programme to help them in their objective of learning, sharing and caring about nature. So, their first Water Challenge was: “Let’s make dirty water drinkable!” The Water Explorers started off with a discussion on how much water are use in the average household and the processes of cleaning water and how this beautiful, sparkling cleaned water can be used wisely or foolishly misused in homes! They learnt about the water treatment system in their town, Howick. They are all very excited as they will be planning a visit to the Water Treatment plant in their town, as an outing for their Home School Nature Club! They got down to some serious water exploring, as they also learnt how to make a simple water filter! They started their experiment with a few empty plastic bottles with the ends of the bottle cut off and the top of the bottle put back in the bottle facing down. They needed to stop the sand from getting out the bottle, so they filled the bottle with filtered material such as pebbles, grass, mesh, paper and cotton. They added a layer of gravel to strengthen the filter material and prevent the sand mixing with the water. The Water Explorers poured very muddy water through the filter. The water that came out of the filter, was much clearer, although still murky and muddy. The Water Explorers realised that they could pour the water through the filter again and again to get clearer water. They realised that the order of material packed in the filter influences the end result of clear water just as the type of sand also influences the end result of clear water. The conclusion was that the water was probably not safe to drink yet, as it could still contain harmful bacteria that the filter did not remove, so as a follow up activity they need to experiment how to purify the water, to make it drinkable! This might be an option to consider for an activity at home! So, let’s be wise Water Explorers!