This lesson is an adaptation of Project Wet's On Track with Hydration Lesson. In Arizona, hydration is very important and I wanted to take the main ideas of the lesson and turn it in to something that was easily used in my classroom.
To begin the lesson, I ask the class if anyone one knows what our bodies are primarily made up of. A student does know that it is water and I ask him to tell the class how he knew this. When I do this I ask them to tell me about how they ad that locked away as a part of their schema. He explains that his parents told him that once.
I go on to confirm and tell the class that water is our most important nutrient. It helps our body function and allows for our body's systems to work properly. To help them connect I give them examples of our body needing water to cushion our brain and joints, and that it also gets all our nutrients to the right parts of our bodies.
I then explain that our bodies need different amounts of water depending on our age. Adults need to have 60% water in their bodies, but kids can find themselves in real danger if they do not take care of themselves. I explain that our body turns over water, we lose it and take it in. Kids do this quickly and often.
To help them understand water as it leaves and enters, I ask if they know how our bodies loses water? This can get a little silly because of urination but they need to understand that because it is a key to good hydration. We also talk about sweating. I then ask how do we take on water. This is tricky and most do not realize that we can only take on more water by our mouth.
I ask if anyone has ever been dehydrated or knows what dehydrated means. This gets a few stories and pull out the key details for the class to focus on. I ask the class to turn and talk about dehydration with their elbow partner. When I bring them back together I ask the class to play "me too" with me. Each time I go over something that they might have talked about the pair will say "me too."
To start, I ask if they talked about dehydration as occurring when we have not replaced or taken on more water. This gets a few confirming with me too. I explain how the weather and humidity can affect our hydration. I ask if anyone discussed how fruits and vegetables can help with hydration. I then end by going over drinking before, during, and after playing, especially when playing sports.
To better understand how losing and taking on water works we are going to conduct two experiments. The first one, I am going to lead and the whole class will participate with me. I place a large rug on the floor and with tape mark the top with an X. I am going to ask the class to visualize this rug as a body and the X is the mouth. I then tell the class that I will pick on engaged and active listening students to help me demonstrate the water entering and leaving our bodies.
I ask a student to come up and stand by the body. I am going to read a scenario and they will have to determine if they enter or leave the body. For the first one, I have them drink a glass of water in the morning. The student then has to enter the rug through the X or mouth. Next, the body (my class named Jim) walks to school. The student then needs to leave the body because of the physical activity. They sit down and choose another student or students. I continue modeling drinking, eating, and moving to show that sometimes we are not aware that our body has lost water.
With a basic visual completed, students are ready to do their own experiment. I have marked clear drinking cups with a line to show 60%. I am going to split the class into pairs. Each pair will get a water bottle, and a cup. I explain that the cup represents your body and they need to begin filling the cup to the line.
I am then going to hand out scenario strips. I have taken them and cut them apart and placed them in envelopes for the groups. Students will randomly pull from the envelope and decide whether they need to put water back to the bottle because they lost water or whether they add water from taking it in. They will go through there strips and then have a certain amount of water left over.
With their strips all completed, they are left with a different amount in their cups. This is because as they pulled the strips it was done randomly. Within their pairs students are going to decide whether they are hydrated or not. They need to each write a paragraph about the level of their water, whether they were dehydrated or hydrated. I want them to explain what happened to make their cup. The last part they need to include is how they learned from the activity.