Help us save our planet! Writing activity

In pairs, write a similar text to the one you have on your SB pg. 44.

Help us save the planet!

Think of:

  • a water-related problem and the causes of the problem
  • things that will happen if we don’t take action
  • ways to help reduce the problem

Use the writing plan on you book (SB pg.44)



  • a water-related problem: managing wastewater
  • the causes of the problem: people throwing unsafe items or food down the drain (check the Water Impact Quiz for ideas)


  • a water-related problem: the Llobregat river is dirty
  • ways to reduce the problem: automatated trash collection wheels


  • a water-related problem: managing stormwater to avoid flooding
  • ways to reduce the problem: building a green roof / creating rain gardens


  • a water-related problem: lots of people around the world don’t have access to toilets
  • consequences of the problem: diseases & dangerous situations for women

Other ideas: people waste water, and lots of more ideas on this blog and in your dossier!

Work in pairs, use google docs and share your writing with me on

City solutions to manage stormwater and wastewater.

Let’s watch these videos about city solutions to water issues:

VIDEO 1 (up to 01:26)

Stormwater Management: Green Roofs and Rain Gardens from GrowNYC on Vimeo.

VIDEO 2 (up to 03:45)

Video 2 link so that you can cite the source.

VIDEO 3 (up to 02:27)


Where does my poo go?

When you press the flush button, your wee, poo, toilet paper and water go down a pipe called a sewer.

The toilet flushes the wastes down the sewer pipe.

The sewer pipe from your house also collects and removes other wastes. This might be soapy water from baths and showers, or water left over from washing dishes and clothes. Together, all of these wastes are called “sewage”.

The wastes from your house join those from other homes and flow into bigger sewer pipes, which take all the sewage to a place where it is treated. This place is called a sewage treatment plant.

Sewage contains lots of germs and if people come into contact with it, it can make them very sick. The treatment also removes things that people have flushed down the toilet.

The sewage is cleaned in the treatment plant. Chemicals are added to kill as many germs as possible. Then the treated water is released into a local river or even the ocean.

[Adapted from CuriousKid]

I. What is the river in London called?

II. True or false?

1. It takes just 24 hours for sewage to be clean enough to return to the river every day.

2. Becton sewage works handles the sewage from 3.4 million Londoners.

3. It equates to 13 Olympic swimming pools every hour.

4. Sewage is mixed with bacteria and oxygen so that it is degraded.

5. Solids are incinerated and that provides energy.

Active listening

I. Do you like The Big Bang Theory? Do you recognise these characters? How would you describe them? Let’s watch a short clip.

[Thanks to Larry Ferlazzo for sharing the clip]

II. So, what happened here?

III. Who was a GL and who was a BL? Why?

Let’s have a look at other, more formal, active listening prompts you can use.

IV. Have a look at this. Do you know what this is called? When you create a work by making an abbreviation consisting of the first letters of each word in the name of something, pronounced as a word? As in ESO or BFF?

RASA: Receive, Appreciate, Summarize & Ask.

As sound expert Julian Treasure says in his TED Talk “We are losing our listening”, we can use this acronym (RASA), which is the Sanskrit  word for “juice” or “essence.”

RASA stands for:

  1. Receive“, which means pay attention to the person;
  2. Appreciate“, making little noises like “hmm,” “oh,” “OK“;
  3. Summarize” — the word “so” is very important in communication;
  4. Ask,” ask questions afterwards.

V. So, if we consider RASA and go back to Amy and Sheldon, what was Amy doing?

VI. This infographic might be useful for you:

[Edited from this source]

VII. This is a nice quote by Diana Senechal, university professor, author and winner of the Hiett Prize in the Humanities

[Sources: The Teacher Toolkit & Story Corps]

VIII. We are now going to practise listening actively with a role play about what we learned at the River Interpretation Center. Let’s have a look at the prompts first to see if you remember which river facts are true and which are false.

You will be given some active listening cards and the aim is to be the first one to get rid of your cards. If you don’t have a suitable card, you can use the prompts in your worksheet.

You will be assessed by some classmates in your group. This is the assessment rubric they are going to use. 

About toilets

I. Do you know who Matt Damon is?

II. Let’s play “true or false” with him.

III. What do you think this ad is about?

IV. Why do you think open urination and defecation is different for men and for women?

V. Have a look at these Toilets Of 7 Families Around The World

  1. What is a a pour-flush toilet?
  2. And a pit toilet or pit latrine?

VI. Which do you think is the strangest / the most convenient / the cleverest / the funniest / the most amazing of these toilets?

  1. The one-way glass public toilet?
  2. The evening Urilift which looks like a hole cover during the day?
  3. The Pimped Out John which  includes a laptop, a gaming console, a TV, a refrigerator and even some exercise pedals?
  4. The crystal Isis toilet?
  5. The Toilet Seat Scale which tells you how much weight you’ve lost while using it?

VII. Have a look at this slideshow on the World’s craziest toilet bowls. Which is the top craziest for you? Why?

Submit your votes for VI and VII in a comment below.

Water in our city

What are the waterways and bodies of water near our city?

Jordi Capdevila Solà [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], Wikimedia Commons
Eva11975 [Public domain], Wikimedia Commons
Damaqu [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], Wikimedia Commons
How are these waterways or bodies of water part of our city’s history?
What are some water-related challenges you have noticed or heard about in our city?