Around 180 students from schools across Adelaide have tackled the complexities of urban water supply this week at SA Water’s innovative Sustainability Challenge workshop, to build analytical skills and their knowledge of environmental and socio-economic factors.
Sustainability Challenge lets students in grades six to nine become ‘sustainability detectives’ assessing how water and wastewater services can be supplied to towns in responsible ways.
The students from Salisbury North Primary School, Westminster School and St Brigids Catholic School soaked up principles of urban planning, populations and demographics while learning about the water cycle and the important treatment processes required for different water sources.
SA Water's General Manager Communications and Engagement Josh Zugajev said the workshops are part of the corporation’s commitment to educate students about how water resources are managed.
"As part of Sustainanility Challenge, students become environmental, social and financial investigators, posing their own questions and finding the answers to build water and wastewater infrastructure for an entire community," Josh said.
"The students use 3-D maps of a land area to plann where to build houses and farms, and working out how to sustainably supply an entire town with safe, clean drinking water and effective sanitation."
Held at SA Water House in Victoria Square, the hands-on sessions hold water for teachers too, aligning with theAustralian Curriculum in the areas of science, geography and sustainability.
"It helps students understand water is a precious resource that supports life and the earth’s population of 7.5 billion people," Josh said.
"Although 75 per cent of the earth’s surface is covered in water, only one per cent is fresh water we can drink, and most of that is stored in underground aquifers rather than on the earth’s surface."
Around 3,400 students have taken part in the workshop since it first started in 2010. As well as Sustainability Challenge, SA Water’s learning program supports tours, workshops and shows such as Slippery Stuff, Follow That Drop and Poo-Do Gurus.
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