Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

*Click to open and customize your own copy of the Water Cycle Lesson Plan.

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic Water Cycle, and supports the standard of describing the cycling of water through Earth’s systems driven by energy from the sun and the force of gravity. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of projects.

Step 1: ACTIVATE PRIOR KNOWLEDGE 

Ask students:

  •  What do you think happens to the water that falls to the ground after it stops raining?

Step 2: BUILD KNOWLEDGE

  • Read the description on the Water Cycle topic page.
  • Play the Movie, pausing to check for understanding. 
  • Have students read one of the six Related Reading articles. Partner them with someone who read a different article to share what they learned with each other.

Step 3: APPLY and ASSESS 

Students take the Water Cycle Quiz, applying essential literacy skills while demonstrating what they learned about this topic.

Step 4: EXTEND and DEEPEN

Students express what they learned about the water cycle while practicing essential literacy skills with one or more of the following activities. Differentiate by assigning ones that meet individual student needs.

  • Make-a-Movie: Create a video from the perspective of the Sun about its role in the water cycle. In your movie, answer this question: How does the Sun’s energy affect water molecules?
  • Make-a-Map: Make a cycle map illustrating the flow of water molecules from surface water, to the air, to the ground. 
  • Creative Coding: Code a learning game challenging players to sort water cycle-related vocabulary terms into self-selected categories.

More to Explore

Earth System Unit: Continue to build understanding around Earth’s systems with more BrainPOP topics.

Teacher Support Resources:

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

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