In the United States, we rarely think about what we would do if we went to our faucet and no clean water came out. Yet, some Americans have been faced with water shortages before. In times of severe droughts, or when storms cause power outages or water contamination, people are faced with the reality of locating clean, freshwater for hydration, cooking, and bathing. In many countries around the world, this is their reality each and every day. Posing the question to students will not only provide the opportunity to talk about where water comes from, but it can also provide the opportunity for students to think about their local water resources. Where would they go to find water in their local communities? Would they feel that the water was safe to drink?

Watch this video of 6th grade students in San Diego, California—a coastal community. The purpose of this classroom video is to listen to student ideas about what they would do to find clean freshwater.

For additional classroom context, video analysis, and reflection opportunities, read the Picture of Practice page for "If Your Water Ran Out!" in the Earth's Freshwater Environmental Literacy Teacher Guide, page 103.