Lesson 1

Water, Water Everywhere: Designing Water Filters

Saving Salila’s Turtle / Grades 1–6 / North Chelmsford, MA

The EIE Curriculum

EiE - Water, Water Everywhere: Designing Water Filters, L1

A storybook introduces the engineering challenge and context. In this story, Salila, a girl from India, learns about environmental engineering as she designs her own water filter.

Reflection Questions

How does Meghan set the stage for the reading of Saving Salila’s Turtle?

Meghan has students share their prior knowledge about the setting of the story, and leads a discussion about some of the key ideas presented in the book.

  • Before reading, Meghan has students share what they know about India, the setting of the story. This is particularly exciting for the many Indian-American students in Meghan’s class. (0:40)
  • Meghan gets students thinking about where drinking water comes from and why clean water is important. (1:07–1:49) 
  • Meghan introduces the term pollution, and tells her students to listen for any mention of pollution in the story she is about to read. (2:17)

What teaching strategies do you notice Meghan using to structure the review of how Salila uses the Engineering Design Process (EDP)?

Based in Montessori tradition, the activity includes sharing and modeling, followed by small group collaboration.

  • For each step of the EDP, Meghan elicits ideas from students about what Salila did. (6:42, 7:21, 7:58, 8:05)
  • After sharing, Meghan’s co-teacher, Kathryn, models writing one example of what Salila did on the white board for everyone to see. (6:56, 7:34, 8:13)
  • Meghan then asks students to discuss and agree on what they will write down for their group. (7:29, 8:22, 8:57, 9:24)