Since September 2018 Institut equalita is partner of the project “WATERSCHOOL”. The aim of the Strategic Partnership is to aims to create a range of innovative, open educational resources that support schools and pedagogues in communicating messages relating to the importance of drinking water.
Why Water in Schools? Facts & Figures
Water and health
- More than 20 percent of children in EU are overweight or obese. The rates have skyrocketed over the past decades..
- The consumption of sugar sweetened drinks is highly associated with obesity in children. Almost 40 percent of pupils sugar intake comes from beverages.
- Promotion and provision of drinking water in schools has shown to prevent overweight.
- In Europe, 20–90 percent of 6-year-old children have dental caries and at the age of 12,
- The consumption of sugary drinks encourages the development of caries. Dental caries can be prevented by avoiding free sugars.
Drinking water in schools is a key in prevention of obesity and caries.
Water and school performance
- The daily water intake should balance with the loss of water through sweating, breathing and urine.
- Half of the kids do not meet their minimum hydration requirements.
- Even mild dehydration can cause cognitive impairment, tiredness and headaches, what is bad for school success.
- Proper hydration is an important prerequisite for concentration and performance in school.
Drinking water promotes efficiency.
Water and environment
- Protection and sustainable utilization of the resource water is a priority goal.
- Per minute a million plastic bottles are bought around the world and the number will jump another 20 percent by 2021.
- Plastic bottles are one of the most common single use plastic items on European beaches.
- Bottled beverages have heavy impact on lifestyles of young people and children, especially at school.
- Schools free of single use plastic bottles are an important step implementing the EU Plastics Strategy.
Education raises awareness for water and environmental protection.
Drinking tap water reduces bottled garbage.
Become a „Waterschool“
The importance of drinking water in schools is well known by pedagogues. Meanwhile most of kindergarten and school teachers allow waterdrinking during the lesson and they try to support drinking water in their classroom.
To meet the requirements, it takes more than only allowing, it is necessary to implement drinking rituals and active promotion of water drinking in schools.
Daily training is basic to change habits.
Project activities and results
Through the use of digital technologies, the project WATERSCHOOL aims to create a range of innovative, open educational resources that support schools and pedagogues in communicating messages relating to the importance of drinking water.
Main result is an online learning course that advises users on the appropriate use of tap water in schools and kindergartens. As a result of the Erasmus+ WATERSCHOOL project, the basic steps of implementing tap water drinking in schools and early years settings will be developed on an EU-level.
The project will create:
- A set of guidelines and didactic concepts for WATERSCHOOL project.
- A WATERSCHOOL online portal with various resources, good practise examples, and a news-section with updated current research and regulations.
- An English pilot WATERSCHOOL e-learning course.
- National versions of the WATERSCHOOL e-learning course, adapted for all partner countries and languages. All materials will be evaluated during a testing phase.
- Dissemination workshops with stakeholders in all partner countries
- International Networking
Teachers/pedagogues get access to learning resources, as well as networking opportunities on a national and international level.
School authorities get specific advice on the steps required to establish their schools as WATERSCHOOLS.
Municipalities are provided with best practice examples that will allow them to start thinking about how plastic waste can be minimised in schools, how health can be improved through drinking tap water and how they can work together with water suppliers to improve access to tap water.
Water suppliers benefit from best practice examples that demonstrate the work that other suppliers have done with schools and pupils/students. Advice on how suppliers can support WATERSCHOOL initiatives, while also taking the messages beyond schools to the wider public, are offered.
The project involves partners in Austria (lead partner), Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Slovenia and United Kingdom. All partners are institutions with experiences and competencies in different areas of nutrition, sustainability and (school)education.
Further information about the project http://www.waterschools.eu