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Water Works

WATER PROMOTION

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Getting Started

Providing and promoting water, especially in place of sugar-sweetened beverages, can help prevent dental cavities, promote overall health, and help students and staff feel better throughout the day. Earn this badge by promoting water as the beverage of choice at school.

Steps To Earn This Badge

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Step 1 - Ask the Students

Ask students about the drinking water at school. Are fountains or hydration stations easy to find? Is it possible to get water during class?

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Step 2 - Start a Conversation

Share Why Water Works (see Water at Schools Toolkit in Tools – page 3 ) and have the Water Talk (page 5) to see how to increase water drinking at school and in the classroom.

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Step 3 - Do a Nutrition Checkup

Think about the drinks that compete with water (e.g. juice in vending machines, artificially-sweetened drinks available at the cafeteria, drinks served at sporting events) and look for ways to promote water instead. Use the suggestions in How to Promote Water (page 8) to make water the drink of choice at your school.

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Step 4 - Make it Fun

Have fun promoting water as the beverage of choice! To earn this badge, choose at least one of the ideas below to encourage students and staff to drink more water.

Badge Inspiration

  • Choose from the many activities in the School Water Toolkit
  • Have students create a poster for each of the passport to hydration water messages and run the Passport to Hydration Scavenger Hunt (page 9)
  • Serve fruit-infused water for special occasions at school (page 11)
  • Play the Water Wheel Game (page 14) at a health fair
  • Run a Photovoice Activity (page 16) with students more about strengths and barriers to water access and promotion
  • Ask students to share their ideas for promoting water with school council, staff and other students to get their feedback and suggestions
  • Hold a ‘water’s cool in our school’ health day to promote drinking water
  • Partner with students and teachers in your school’s art, music, photography, and digital media classes to design a class project that promotes water consumption
  • Launch a design contest for water bottle designs or water fountain poster designs. Ask students to brainstorm non-food prizes for the contest.

The staff and students of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Elementary School in Hamilton identified nutrition as a priority issue at their school; specifically, increasing the consumption of water versus sugary drinks. The Health Action Team developed a comprehensive two year plan, which included:

  •  A school wide assembly and visual display to show students the high sugar content of some popular beverages and teach them about health risks of too much sugar
  • Announcements and posters hung throughout the school with “Did you know…?” messaging
  • The purchase and installation of 3 hydration stations, with money received from grants, the Catholic School Council and school fundraising efforts
  • The purchase of several water infusers, which now serve fruit and/or vegetable infused water at all school events (instead of offering pop, juice or bottled water)
  • Two interactive assemblies led by The City of Hamilton Water Education Program
  • Water-related curriculum links and lessons for staff
  • Attendance by all Gr. 4 students at a city-wide Water Festival
  • A student contest to create water slogans and artwork, which were then used by the Water Education Program to develop posters and mounted above each hydration station
  • Water bottles offered by the Water Education Program at a significantly subsidized cost

Future plans include issuing a school wide water consumption challenge to a neighbouring school.