Page 1

Scouts Meeting Schedule Theme: World Scout Environment Programme – Clean Water Objective: Introduce Scouts to the significance of water in our world. Using games and activities, Scouts will learn about various sources of water pollution and potential environmental implications. They will also learn ways to help reduce water pollution. Time


Program Details

10 mins

Gathering Activity

Water Pollution Blob Tag

5 mins

Opening Ceremony

10 mins

Theme Activity

Dilution: A Pollution Solution?

30 mins

Theme Activities

Taste Test Waterfowl and Oil Edible Aquifer

15 mins


Clean Water Quiz

10 mins

Patrol Meeting

5 mins

Spiritual Fellowship

5 mins

Closing Ceremony

15 mins

Leader Discussion Time

Leader Responsible

Optional Activities: • Non-Point Source Pollution Model • Water Filter Comparison • African Water Cleaner

Meeting Notes: ————————————————————————————————————————————— ———————————————————————————————————————————————————— ————————————————————————————————————————————————————



Scouts Meeting – Detail Planning

Introduction Water is very important to our world. Life on Earth would not exist without water, people use water for many things in our everyday lives. We need water to drink and cook our food, but also to have baths or showers, flush the toilets, wash our clothes, clean our houses, and grow fruits, vegetables, trees, and flowers. We use water for many things that we do not even think about. For example, it takes between 2000 to 6000 litres of water to produce a pair of jeans! Although we have a lot of water on Earth, only 3 percent of the water that we have on Earth is fresh water. Humans cannot drink salt water, which means that we cannot easily use the water in the oceans, unless we desalinize it (that means to take the salt out). The water cycle is a closed cycle. That means we cannot make or add new water to the cycle if we need more. The water that we have on Earth is all of the water that we will ever have, and we need to protect that water. Did you know that the water you drink today might be the same water that a dinosaur drank? Or the same water that you used to take a bath in last year? It’s true! Water is continuously traveling through the water cycle, in one of the five stages: • Precipitation: Water falls to the ground as snow, rain, sleet, or hail. • Surface Run-off: In Canada, a lot of our water is stored as snow in the winter, until it melts and flows as run-off to rivers, lakes, and streamflow into oceans. • Infiltration: The water sinks into the ground. Some is absorbed by plants and trees, but the rest becomes part of the aquifer and groundwater flow. • Evaporation and Transpiration: As water in lakes and rivers become heated by the sun, it transforms into water vapour in the air. Trees and plants also give off water vapour from their leaves through transpiration. • Condensation: Water vapour rises and collects in the sky as clouds. Condensation happens when the water vapour cools and turns back into liquid water and falls as precipitation. And the water cycle begins again!

Gathering Activity 2


Water Pollution Blob Tag Objective: A warm-up activity to instill the importance of clean water to the Scouts.

Background Information: Earth has a limited amount of water, and we must be careful with the water that we have.

many uses of water, the ways that we might pollute water, and the ways that we can save water. Explain that polluted water continues along the water cycle and can contaminate other sources of water. One or two Scouts are “Pollution.” As they play tag, the Scouts who are tagged also become “Pollution,” and must join hands in a “blob” formation to tag others.

Theme Activities

Equipment: • A large, defined playing space.


Explain the importance of clean water. Discuss the



Dilution: A Pollution Solution? Objective: Introduce Scouts to the concept of water pollution. Discuss sources of water pollution and ways that pollution can be avoided and/or fixed. Is dilution a good solution to water pollution? Does it solve the problem?

Background Information: Water pollution can be difficult to deal with. Lakes have many sources of water, such as runoff, groundwater, and rainfall or precipitation. The “new” water that enters a lake will gradually replace all of the existing water in the lake, which will leave to continue on through the water cycle (evaporation, streamflow to the ocean, etc.). It can take a long time for this “renewal” or “flush” to occur and the lake water to be completely “renewed.” The “renewal time” or “flush rate” differs greatly from lake to lake – from nine years for Lake Erie to nearly 200 years for Lake Superior. Think about where the polluted water is going to go – just because it left the lake, does it mean that the pollution is gone? Will the pollution continue through the water cycle? Is the water left in the lake actually clean?

Equipment: For each Patrol: • 2 large, preferably clear, measuring cups or jugs of the same size.

water. This represents the lake. Stir in a few drops of food colouring so that it is bright red. Explain that this food colouring represents pollution, and discuss possible sources (sewage, fertilizer, acid rain, etc). • Fill the second jug or measuring cup with tap water. This will represent the amount of precipitation and other “new” water that will gradually replace the existing lake water. Holding the measuring cup with red-dyed water over the large clear bowl, gradually and carefully pour the “new” water into the “polluted” container. The waters will mix and overflow into the bowl. Ask the Scouts what happened? Where did the pollution go? Is there still pollution left? How many “renewals” do they think it will take before the lake is “clean”? • Try a second “renewal” by repeating the process above. It will usually take three or four renewals before the red dye “pollutant” appears to be gone. Discuss whether or not the lake is actually clean - do the Scouts think that there might still be pollutants left that are in such minute amounts that we can’t see them? • Now examine the water in the bowl. Is it polluted? Did the pollutant go away? What could the bowl represent – the water cycle? The ocean? Other lakes and streams? It is a problem with water pollution that the pollutants are merely moved around rather than eliminated.

• Food colouring (red works well here) • A large, clear bowl (a punch bowl is ideal) • A supply of clean tap water (a water jug if a tap is not within easy access)

Taste Test

Instructions: • Fill one of the measuring cups or jugs with tap



Objective: To understand that, just because water looks clean, does not always mean it is safe to drink.

Background Information: This activity allows Scouts to sample various samples of water to select the best for drinking. This is a good activity to follow “Dilution: A Pollution Solution?” because it will reinforce the understanding that pollution is not always visible. NOTE: Please reinforce to the Scouts that tasting water is not a safe way to find out whether water is safe to drink. Remind them that they should never drink water that is not tap or bottled water unless an adult says that it is okay.

Equipment: • 6 clear plastic pop or water bottles (labels removed), and labeled 1-6. • Carbonated water • Salt • Lemon juice • Sugar • Vanilla extract (or other flavouring such as coconut) • Dixie cups

keeping one for plain tap water. You should have one bottle with carbonated water, one with salt water, one with lemon juice + water, one with sugared water, one with vanilla + water, and one with tap water (the control). • Ensure that the added flavours do not drastically change the look of the water. The goal is to have all six bottles look very similar in appearance. Introduce the activity as an investigation into the importance of clean water and the difficulties that water pollution presents. Let the Scouts know that all of the water is safe to drink, but some may taste better than others. • Put all six bottles on a table in front of the room. Take a poll, asking the Scouts to guess which one they think is tap water. Give each Scout a cup to drink from. Starting with number 1, give each Scout a sample to taste. Watch their reactions! If they do not want to drink the whole sample, let them dispose of it in the jug or bowl. Continue with all six samples, and discuss their reactions and ideas about each sample. Enrichment Activity: Bring five samples of different bottled water and one bottle of tap water. Remove labels, but number bottles and keep an answer sheet. Taste test as above. Discuss the problems with bottled water – unnecessary plastic, less regulation, and alternatives such as canteens or reusable water bottles, home water filtration, etc.

• A jug or bowl for unwanted water

Instructions: • First, fill the bottles with different water mixtures,


Theme Activities Waterfowl and Oil Don’t Mix


Objective: Create understanding about the environmental impact of oil spills.

Background Information: What happens when oil is spilled in the ocean? Many sea birds die as a result, even when cleanup begins. Detergents are used to help “clean” the spill – the detergents allow the oil and water to mix, so that large pools of oil no longer exist. Rather, small circles of oil will float on the top of the water. Some detergents used can strip birds of their natural oils, causing the water to infiltrate the feathers. This loss of waterproofing and the weight of the extra water can cause birds to sink and drown.

Equipment: For each Patrol:

the birds after the oil spill. Add a feather to each bowl or tin pan. Ask the Scouts to think about ways that they could help clean up the spill. Hand out spoons and popsicle sticks, and let them explore. • Now, add dishwashing liquid to half of the pans. Gently stir and observe. What do you see? What happens to the feather? • Add powdered detergent to the other half of the pans. Gently stir and observe. What do you see? What happens to the feather?

Edible Aquifer Objective:

• Measuring spoons

Through this hands-on activity, Scouts will understand the water cycle and how pollution can affect groundwater, and through that, our drinking water sources. Scouts will also understand the geologic formations of an aquifer.

• Cooking oil

Background Information:

• Liquid dishwashing detergent

Groundwater is water that is stored underground in the spaces in soil, sand and rock called an aquifer. Groundwater moves slowly through these layers of soil, sand and rocks called aquifers. Aquifers are geologic formations of underground, water-bearing permeable rock or unconsolidated materials such as gravel, sand, or clay. Groundwater can be brought up through natural springs or wells and pumped out. Aquifers are recharged through rain and snow melt, but in some areas, people face water shortages because groundwater is pumped out faster than it can be recharged. Groundwater is also in danger of contamination and pollution from human activities.

• Feathers • Tin pans or clear bowls, one for each group

• Powdered detergent • Water • Popsicle sticks • Spoons

Instructions: • Pour some water in each tin or bowl (about 1/3 full). Add a tablespoon of cooking oil to the water. Look at the surface of the water – what do you see? Ask the Scouts to predict what will happen to

Up to 25% of Canadians get their drinking water from groundwater sources. Groundwater is also an important source of water for the irrigation of crops.




• Vanilla ice cream (a 1L carton supplies enough for approximately 25 children) • Clear soda pop (Lemon-lime works well) • Gummy candy, chocolate chips, or crushed ice to represent sand and gravel • Candy sprinkles (the kind used for cake decorating) • Powdered juice crystals (grape works well because it is very visible) • Ice cream scoop • Clear plastic cups, one for each child • Straws, one for each child • Spoons (optional) • Chalkboard, white board, or flip chart on which to draw a rudimentary aquifer

Instructions: • Review the basics of groundwater and aquifers. • Pass out one cup to each child. Fill each cup 1/3 full with gummy candy, chocolate chips, or crushed ice. Explain that this represents gravels and soils.

• Have the children “drill a well” with the straw. • Now, have the children “pump the well” by drinking the soda pop. This represents the pumping of drinking water. • Sprinkle some drink crystals into each cup, on top of the “confining layer.” This represents pollution. Ask the children what they think will happen next – what will happen to the pollution? Where will it go? • Next, make it “rain” by pouring soda pop over the candy or ice, just enough to cover it. Ask the children to look again at the aquifer – what is happening? What can they observe? • “Pump the well” again. Notice how the contaminants enter the well. Ask the children what they see. How many more times would it have to rain before the pollution is gone? Is there a way to take the pollution out? Is the water safe to drink? • Talk about different ways that the groundwater can be polluted: landfills, leaky septic or gas tanks, fertilizers, pesticides, etc.

• Pour enough soda pop in the cup, just to cover the candy or ice. Explain that this represents the groundwater. • Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream to the cup, to serve as the “confining layer.” • Add more “sand and gravel” (gummy candy or chocolate chips, etc) on top. • Sprinkles represent the soil and should now be sprinkled on the top. Ask the children to look at the aquifer – what do they see?



Game Clean Water Quiz Objective: Test the Scouts’ knowledge and reinforce concepts through this fun game!

Equipment: • A shaker or bell for each Patrol. Eco-friendly option: fill a pop bottle 1/3 full of dried beans, screw on lid and tape securely.

Instructions: • Give each Patrol a shaker or bell. • Review game rules: do not shake or ring the bell until the question has been fully read, first team to shake or ring the bell has the chance to answer the question, each person in the Patrol should have a chance to shake the shaker or ring the bell.

Questions: • Name one of the stages of the Water Cycle (keep asking until all stages are mentioned). Evaporation, Transpiration, Condensation, Precipitation. • Name one of the materials that makes up an aquifer (keep asking until all materials are mentioned). Clay, sand, gravel, soil, silt. • What form can precipitation take (keep asking until all forms are mentioned)? Snow, rain, sleet, hail. • How does detergent affect a sea bird? It washes off the natural oils and can cause the bird to sink or drown.

• What type of pollution might contaminate an aquifer? Fertilizers, pesticides, landfills, leaky septic tanks or gas tanks. • How much water does it take to make a pair of jeans? 2000 to 6000 Litres. • How much water does a person use in Africa per day? 3 Litres. • How much water does a person use in Canada per day? 300 Litres. • During evaporation, a puddle of water becomes this ________________. Water Vapour. • The water on Earth is the same water that was here millions of years ago – True or False? True. • Water that comes from a cloud and falls as snow, sleet, rain, or hail is called “run-off” – True or False? False. • What percent of the world’s water is fresh water? 3 percent. • Does oil and water mix together? No, which is why we use detergents to help clean up oil spills. • Name two ways that we can conserve water. Only washing a full load of laundry, not using a sprinkler during the hottest part of the day, using a low-flow toilet/shower head, taking 5 minute showers, only running the dishwasher when it is full, use a broom to clean off a driveway instead of hosing it off, etc.

• What is groundwater used for? Drinking water, irrigation.



Optional Activity Clean Water – Crossword Puzzle 11




55 66


88 99 10 10




14 14



18 18


Across 1. Water beneath the Earth’s surface. 3. Rain, sleet, snow, and hail are all forms of ___________________. 4. Dripping ________________ can cause us to lose water without realizing it. 7. A large body of salt water. 8. Water that is not dirty is ______________. 10. The stage of the water cycle where water changes from a liquid to a vapour. 11. We all need water to _______________. 13. To contaminate water. 14. Water vapour in the atmosphere forms ______________. 16. Saving water also saves ____________. 17. Acid rain can strip the bark off of a ________________. 18. A “tube” used to pump groundwater. 19. A long period of dry weather is called a _____________.


Down 2. Water is cleaned at ________________ plants before it is used. 5. The process of “saving” something. 6. Groundwater can be used to irrigate ______________________. 8. Watering plants with a watering _____ uses less water than a hose. 9. Aquifers can be made up of soil, sand, clay or __________________. 12. An _______________ is where groundwater gathers. 15. Take a _______________ instead of a bath.

(Solution on page 10)



Water Filter Comparison

Optional Activities Non-Point Source Pollution Model The Non-Point Source Pollution (NPSP) Model is a totally interactive environmental education tool for understanding pollution, where it comes from and what we, as individuals, can do about it. By building a model of a watershed in their area and researching possible sources of pollution, Scouts can see non-point source pollution in action! Decorate your model with items found at thrift stores or recycling depots, and use items like chocolate chips, juice crystals, chocolate and strawberry syrups to represent pollution. Use watering cans to make it “rain” and watch what happens!


To understand the importance of filtration.

Background Information: Water becomes polluted when factories dump waste into rivers, streams, and oceans. Some treatment plants fail to adequately clean our wastes before dumping them into the water system. Even the chemicals that we use around our homes may get into the water. We are not able to see much of this pollution, but the most noticeable kind of water pollution is visible and involves solids. Filtering can remove much of this pollution, but it doesn’t always mean that the water is safe to drink!


Please see the website to download a Non-Point Source Pollution Model Guide and building instructions. (Solution to Crossword on page 9)

G R O U N D W A 2T R 33 P R E A 55 U C E T T 66 O C M A N R E 99 S O G N 1010 E V A P O R A T R S A 1212 I V E V A A E Q 1414 U T E C L O U I I 1616 M O N E Y F 1717 N T R E E R 11












C L E A N A I O N 88

D 15S H O 1818 W E L L E 1919 D R O U G H T 15


For each Patrol: • Several small jars with lids • 1 large jar

Use these materials to create a more complex filter. Or create a two or three step filtration system, of various types of filters. What happens?

• Paper towels • A funnel

African Water Cleaner

• Masking tape


• A pen or marker • A variety of water samples

Instructions: • Use the small jars to collect samples of fresh water from streams, lakes, puddles or whatever is near your meeting place. Label each sample. Also fill one jar with tap water as a control. You could also go on a hike or field trip to collect water samples.

Discover how children in Africa are learning to clean water with the help of the sun.

Background information: The sun drives the water cycle. You can use the power of the sun to help clean water.

Equipment: For each Patrol:

• Fold a paper towel in half lengthwise. Put an “x” in the upper left hand corner. Roll the folded towel into a cone so that the “x” is inside the cone. Tape the outside of the cone to close it.

• 1 Litre of water

• Reach into the top of the cone and put your finger in the fold by the “x.” Push one layer to the other side. Now, you’ve made a filter! Make one for each sample of water that you have

• A plastic bag

• Place the filter in the funnel. • Put the funnel in the opening of the larger jar. Pour one sample into the funnel. Remove the filter and open it. Label the filter so that youknow which sample it belongs to. DO NOT DRINK THE FILTERED WATER. • Repeat the step above for each sample. Compare the amount of solid material collected on each towel. Which sample had the most? The least? Why? Enrichment Activity

• Large bowl • A cup (that is short enough to sit in the bowl) • A rock • A small amount of dirt

Instructions: • Mix a small amount of dirt into the water. Pour the dirty water into the large bowl. • Put the cup in the center of the bowl. • Put the bowl into the plastic bag and seal shut. • Put a rock on the plastic bag, directly over the glass. • Leave the water cleaner in the sun all day. • Remove the plastic. What do you see? What happened?

Provide Scouts with a variety of other materials like cotton balls, coffee filters, gravel, charcoal, sand, etc.




5 mins Opening Ceremony 5 mins Closing Ceremony 10 mins Theme Activity Dilution: A Pollution Solution? 10 mins Patrol Meeting 10 mins Gather...