This activity is targeted towards 6 to 7-year-old students. The activity starts with a short video that highlights the importance of water for the body and in everyday life. The first part of the activity focuses on the water cycle where students have to create clouds and make rain. Here the students or visitors are shown how the water cycle works. Next, the game also tackles the issue of contamination of the aquifers from activities on land. Here the educator highlights the main activities which can result in pollution of water on a global scale. Contaminants are portrayed as a monster in this game and students are asked to get rid of the monster so as to regain a clean water table.
The second part of the game focuses on the challenges related to urbanisation, where, once cities get built (in the same water cycle format), due to land sealing they will start experiencing floods. Through this game, students are made aware that, by removing including green areas and trees within the urban fabric, the impact of flooding will be reduced.
What is the Water Cycle?
On a warm sunny day, water in a glass seems to slowly disappear. This is because the energy from the sun is heating the water up and turning the liquid water into water vapour. This process is called evaporation. When the water evaporates, it becomes an invisible gas lost in the atmosphere. Evaporation takes place all over the earth, but especially in the oceans and lakes where there is a lot of water. As water vapour rises, it cools off and condenses into water droplets. If the water vapour becomes extremely cold, it will form ice crystals instead of water droplets. As water droplets or ice crystals grow bigger and more numerous, they form clouds. If water droplets or ice crystals become too heavy they can’t float in the air and therefore drop towards the ground as precipitation. Water droplets precipitate as rain whereas ice crystals precipitate as snow. Sometimes, the rain freezes before it hits the earth and precipitates as hail. The water falling on land collects in rivers and lakes, soil, and porous layers of rock, and much of it flows back into the oceans, where it will once more evaporate and therefore start the whole process all-over again. The cycling of water in and out of the atmosphere is a significant aspect of
the weather patterns on Earth.
Most of the water we see each day is in ponds, rivers, oceans, streams, lakes, puddles, and other places on top of the ground. What we don’t often see is the water that soaks into the ground. We use a special word to describe water that has gone underground: groundwater.
If you were to travel underground, you would eventually get deep enough to find all the rock around you soaked with water—you would have entered the saturated zone! The water in the saturated zone is called an aquifer. The height of water in the saturated zone is called the water table. In dry places, the water table is very deep, but in moist places, the water table is shallow. When the water table is higher than the surface of the ground, there are streams, rivers, and lakes on the land.
National Flood Relief Project
The more the population of the islands increase, the more villages and towns have to grow. This is called urbanization. The more buildings we erect the more impermeable surfaces we have. When it rains, if the rainwater does not find permeable surfaces where it can seep into the ground and find its way into our aquifers, the water builds up in the streets. This causes the flooding of our streets. In order to tackle this problem, the National Flood Relief Project was implemented. The project consists of a series of tunnels and reservoirs which capture the runoff water from the streets following rain events. These tunnels channel the rainwater runoff to the sea, eliminating the danger which is created when this water flows in the streets. The system includes soakaway reservoirs which gather a part of this outflowing water and permit it to soak down in the bedrock – thereby enabling this water to recharge the aquifer.