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Water Design Challenge

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This lesson plan was developed by Julianne Slogick and Jeff Holliday at Mount Lebanon School District in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, as part of the Share and Spread Connected Learning Collection, organized by The Sprout Fund with the generous support of the MacArthur Foundation.

You can download a PDF of this lesson plan and its supporting materials on RemakeLearning.org.

Developed by: Julianne Slogick & Jeff Holliday
Subjects: Social Studies, Ecology, Environmental Science
Estimated Time:  About 1 week of in-class work on each module, 1-2 days for culminating event, 1 day for reunion event
Grade Level: 9-12


About This Lesson Plan:
What does it mean to be an active, engaged young global citizen? The Water Design Challenge asks students to explore real world water issues both locally and globally. The program has students collaborate as part of a “water task force” to tackle those issues in physical and virtual spaces while learning about civic engagement.

About Mt. Lebanon School District: 
The Mt. Lebanon School District is a nationally recognized and award-winning school district in suburban Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The district operates seven elementary schools (grades k-5), two middle schools (grades 6-8) and a high school (grades 9-12). The combination of a highly trained staff with educated and committed families results in students who achieve local, state and national honors in instructional, athletic and arts forums.

Pro Tips:
This project is ideal for high school students, and it would work especially well in a social studies class or in an environmental studies class. Consider the organizations in your community who might be especially fruitful for your students to connect with, either at a large-scale culminating event or through a more modest guest-speaker opportunity in the classroom. What government offices, nonprofits, advocacy groups, and community organizations might have important insights to share? Use this lesson plan to help your students understand how deep local engagement can have a global impact. 

Creative Commons Licence