By: Susan Gum // March 23th, 2021 // Featured Stories
On Thursday, March 11, 2021, Delmarva Christian School Milton Campus hosted their inaugural “Water Day” event wherein elementary and middle-school students had the opportunity to learn about the global clean water crisis and raise money to support clean water fundraising efforts around the world.
“When we had to cancel our annual Science Carnival due to COVID-19 restrictions, I knew the students would be disappointed, so I began working on an alternative plan,” said DCMC Middle School Science Teacher Julie Eckels. “I learned of World Vision International’s annual ‘Water Day’ drive and saw an opportunity for our students.”
Immediately, she began tweaking the program to create a comprehensive learning experience. Miss Eckels incorporated academic lessons and week-long challenges that culminated in a one-day, school-wide “Water Day” event that included a ‘Water Walk,’ learning stations, and a fun ‘Dirty Water Dunk.’
“Of course, I wanted to incorporate science and math lessons so the students could develop an understanding of the biology of clean versus unclean water,” said Miss Eckels, “But, as we learned more about how many people don’t have access to water–let alone clean water–we realized the project wasn’t about us anymore.”
The journey began with informational videos highlighting the challenges and risks individuals face every day because of water scarcity. Subsequent lessons included water-use calculations and conservation; microorganisms and water contamination; and tip-tap hand-washing structures.
A week before the event, a special Chapel service was held for the middle school students where they received photos and informational packets of “sponsor children” that they would pray for up to “Water Day.”
Then on March 11, DCMC middle school students took to the streets of Milton and experienced firsthand what it’s like to travel over three miles by foot to gather and transport buckets of water, while younger students remained on campus and participated in numerous learning activities, including: lifting 40-pound jugs of water, constructing ‘tip taps,’ purifying dirty water, calculating average daily water use, and brainstorming solutions for difficult real-world, water-gathering scenarios.
“I believe that connecting with a child and ‘walking’ in their shoes really made a tremendous impact propelling our students to want to learn more,” said Miss Eckels. “I grew more than I ever imagined, and the students did too.”
(Above) Sunny skies and warm temperatures were enjoyed by the middle school students as they journeyed to and from the Milton boat dock retrieving and carrying water along the way.