Third and fourth-graders marked World Water Day with a STEAM session in which students paired up to create water-moving machines. This activity connected a unit on simple machines with the current social studies unit, Africa. Students remembered their enjoyment of the pulleys and levers used in the well and shaduf at the Field Museum. After a discussion of the water cycle, students learned that 1.8 billion people today are drinking water contaminated with human waste. Two students wrote about the experience and collected quotes from their classmates about their contraptions.

-Janet Gray-McKennis

Working with Legos

By Ella and Delphine, 3rd Grade

Hello, here at Ancona the 3rd graders are working with Legos. Yesterday, March the 22nd  was world Water Day! Our teachers decided that we should look through all the things we can make with Legos that can move water in different  directions. Last Week, we went to the Field Museum and saw a water pulley in the Africa section. In the Ancient Egypt section we saw a shaduf, they use it to move water in a similar way that the pulley does.

These are quotes from us and our classmates about the creations that we have made:

“Our machine paddles the water. It also lifts up a bucket that lifts up water.”  – Jonah

“A bucket brings water up to a paddle machine and dumps the water into a water truck.”

– Delphine

“The water spinner will take the water and pour it into lakes so it can have new water.” – Ella

“When we press down water comes up. -Kinzie

“Turn it to make it move”- Xavy

“The thing we made is a water pump and it was a good pump” – Byrionna 

“It brings water to and from the plant part. When I bring it there, the transporter then puts into the the well bucket which stores it. We used gears, wheels, and string. The gears turn pushing the water into the bow which carries it off”.- Alice

“The water invention is a cool contraption when you turn the axle on the wheel it spins the wheel up or down. I like how the gears turn it looks cool . The hard thing is to make the wheel, so yeah”.- Evangeline

“What I was trying to do is put both axles together with a pulley”.- Gabrielle

“The name of the thing is called “the picker upper” and it picks up water from the well, but more than one person can pick something up from the well. It picks up water from the well by have a person pull on the end”.-Cosima

“The machine moves the water in a direction and then picks up the water”.- Laurens

“It turns water”-Kanayo

“I made the well bucket that would pull up the water”.- Dante

“It gets water from the bucket the water turns”-Aaron

So now you’ve got some of the quotes about how we work our machines, you should probably try it out, to