This lesson explores the impact of changing river volumes, floodplain terrain, and prevention and mitigation interventions on communities that are prone to experiencing floods. Students will observe and study flood dynamics and how they can impact communities, and then trial a range of interventions.
- understand that deforestation attributed to human behaviour is increasing the likelihood of floods.
- observe how the shape of the riverbed can have a major influence on where flooding may occur.
- make a model and test out their designs to create solutions to overflowing rivers.
- identify and prepare for flooding events by designing dams, levees and dikes to protect people and property when flooding occurs.
Lesson guides and printables
Australian Curriculum content descriptions:
Relevant parts of Year 6 Science achievement standards: Students describe and predict the effect of environmental changes on individual living things. They explain how natural events cause rapid change to Earth’s surface. They describe and predict the effect of environmental changes on individual living things.
Students follow procedures to develop investigable questions and design investigations into simple cause-and-effect relationships.
Syllabus outcomes: ST3-7PW, ST3-9ES.
General capabilities: Critical and Creative Thinking.
Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability.
Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – The teacher may need to help some groups set up the riverbed models and carve the river which will flow down it.
- Art supplies to build a few model houses (cardstock, pencil, ruler, tape, scissors, colour pencils)
- Device capable of presenting a video to the class
- Jug or large tub for pouring water
- Riverbed model (large plastic tub, large disposable aluminium baking pan, 1kg of soil or sand, book or wooden block to prop up the plastic tub)
- Riverbed model for teacher demonstration (large plastic tub, large disposable aluminium baking pan, ˜1kg of green modelling clay, soil and sand, book or wooden block to prop up the plastic tub)
- Riverbed template (optional)
This lesson is designed to build students’ competencies in the following skills:
- Critical thinking
We encourage you to undertake the free PD Course How to teach a unit on fire and flood resilience for tips on how to best deliver this lesson.
If you’re concerned about the challenging nature of these topics, consider the free PD Course How to approach trauma in the classroom for information on how best to support your students.
This lesson was made in partnership with
Minderoo Foundation (www.minderoo.org).