Teaching Earth Science with Children’s Literature: One Well: The Story of Water on Earth



In the book  One Well: The Story of Water on Earth author Rochelle Strauss explores the concept that all water is connected – oceans, rivers, glaciers and raindrops are all a part of the global well.  The book is illustrated beautifully by Rosemary Woods and is part of the series Citizen Kid, a collection of books that inspire children to be better global citizens.

The author has created an engaging and insightful story about the water cycle, how we use water on Earth and the need for conservation. The book begins by explaining the concept that all water on earth is connected. “So whether you are turning on a faucet in North America or pulling water from a well in Kenya, or bathing in a river in India, it is all the same water.” Each page spread is dedicated to addressing an aspect of water on Earth. Children learn about the recycling of water (the water cycle), and how plants, animals and human beings depend on water to live. Children are presented with some uses of water they may be less familiar with. “About 21 percent of the water we use goes to making everything from computers to cars… Water vapor runs machinery. Water is an ingredient in many products such as lotions, shampoos, chemicals and drinks.” Throughout the book there are collections of interesting facts about water and it’s uses. “Every day 1.8 million tonnes (2 million tons) of garbage are dumped into Earth’s water – enough to fill more than 15,000 boxcars.” The last pages of the book explore access, demand, pollution and conservation.  The author addresses the need to think now about how we treat our water supply because it affects the entire earth and its inhabitants for years to come.

Curriculum Connections
This book pairs nicely with curriculum that teaches conservation or the water cycle and would be appropriate for grades 3-5.  Students can learn about the processes involved in the water cycle (evaporation, condensation, precipitation) (SOL 3.9b), that water is essential for living things (3.9 c), and about the supply and conservation of water. (SOL 3.9d) Teachers may also find the book a good fit when teaching about natural resources and how human influences can affect the survival of species. (SOL 3.10a,b,d)

Additional Resources

  • The back pages in the book provide additional information and ideas for discussing water conservation. The publisher, Kids Can Press has a Learning Resource guide for the book on their website.
  • The EPA has an easy to understand animation of the  water cycle as well as a good selection of interactive games.
  • This complete lesson plan Water: A Never Ending Story includes hands on activities for exploring evaporation, condensation, precipitation and water and soil.

Author: Rochelle Strauss
Rosemary Woods
Kids Can Press
Publication Date:
32 pages
Grade Range:

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