Written by Abigail Chifusa, Global Schools Project Officer
On March 22nd, 2023, Zübeyde Hanım Kindergarten in Turkey celebrated World Water Day with two days of activities focused on Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6: Clean Water and Sanitation.
Zübeyde Hanım Kindergarten chose the theme “Water Footprint Awareness” to celebrate World Water Day and bring a fresh perspective to their annual water saving activities; the school wanted to analyze how to consume water from a wider angle, with the aim to show people that the water they consume is more than just what comes out of a fountain but that it goes beyond what is seen with bare eyes.
On the first day of the World Water Day celebration, a webinar on “Water Footprint Training” was conducted for parents, children, teachers, and staff at the school.
The moderator invited participants to calculate their own water footprints using the Extended Water Footprint Calculator.
Furthermore, during the training, examples of good practices on water consumption were shown and participants were taught how they can reduce water footprints while in school or at home.
Aside from the webinar and training, Zübeyde Hanım Kindergarten also held various activities in classrooms for different age groups. The activities were themed around art, science, water cycling, water saving, and the importance of water in everyone’s lives.
In order to make the students aware of water footprints, the school chose six different everyday goods that are frequently used and consumed, such as T-shirts, apples, hamburgers, paper, bread, and coffee. The teachers opted to use the water container as a measurement unit, as it is something the children were familiar with from their daily life.
On World Water Day, Zübeyde Hanım Kindergarten also organized another event at a shopping mall which is near the school, with an exhibition in order to reach out to more people and draw attention to the concept of a water footprint.
Images showing the water footprint of six goods and water containers representing their water footprint were used at the exhibition, where citizens had the opportunity to stop and learn about the importance of our most precious resource through the guidance of the teachers Throughout the course of the day, teachers took the time to explain to interested shoppers about water footprints.
Lastly, the 5-year-old students also participated in the exhibition at the mall by singing songs related to water footprints. The children drew shoppers’ attention with banners while they sang a song about World Water Day.
It is well known that access to clean water and sanitation is a human right, yet the world is still facing challenges in accessing this basic service. SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation) calls for ensuring universal access to safe and affordable drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene, as well as ending open defecation.
As we reach the mid-point of the 20230 Agenda, it's essential for teachers to implement water-related activities in their classrooms for students to be able to assess the state of water in their communities, explain water scarcity and water pollution, including the global inequities in access to safe drinking water. In this context, the Global Schools Activities Guide on Clean Water is meant to support teachers in carrying out activities in school communities with their students. The activities can be conducted in the classroom or the whole-of-school. Educators can select activities, videos, articles, or worksheets to use in a lesson plan. The teachers and facilitators can use all of the activities in a step-by-step process to develop an entire unit on Clean Water.
At GSP, we encourage everyone to keep taking care of our most precious resource and following the path of our Advocates and Schools.