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Devising the Water Cycle

Title: Devising the Water Cycle

Author:  Michael Avila

Integrated Objective: Students will demonstrate their ability to collaborate and understand the water cycle by devising an original water cycle play by asking questions about character and plot.

  • Theater Objective: Students will demonstrate their ability to collaborate by devising an original play by asking questions about character and plot.
  • Science Objective: Students will demonstrate their understanding of the water cycle by creating a water cycle piece.


Standard Cr2-4.a. Collaborate to devise original ideas for a drama/theatre work by asking questions about characters and plots.

Standard 1 Objective 2 Describe the water cycle.

  • Locate examples of evaporation and condensation in the water cycle (e.g., water evaporates when heated and clouds or dew forms when vapor is cooled).
  • Describe the processes of evaporation, condensation, and precipitation as they relate to the water cycle.
  • Identify locations that hold water as it passes through the water cycle (e.g., oceans, atmosphere, fresh surface water, snow, ice, and ground water).

Essential Questions: How do you devise in theatre? How do water molecules move when heated or cooled? Where do you find the effects of evaporation and condensation?

Materials: Open Space, Paper, Pencils, Water Cycle picture (or markers to draw it on board)

Hook/Pre-Assessment: Becoming Water

  • Find your own spot in the room
  • Now imagine yourself as a water molecule
  • Start my moving your head, how would a water molecule move its head and neck
  • Now move your shoulders like a water molecule. Arms. Hands. Hips, Legs, Feet, Toes.
  • Begin to move around the room as a water molecule. What kind of pathways does water make. Does water change levels? Remember to keep moving all parts of your body as a water molecule. When you pass by another water molecule, how do you respond?
  • The room is starting to heat up and the ice melts. But the room keeps heating up. Hotter and hotter until all of the water in the room does what: evaporates. What does water turn into after evaporating? Water vapor. How does water vapor move differently from liquid water? More quickly, floating, bouncing off walls.
  • Now the room is cooling down a little bit and the water molecules change into liquid again. This is called what? Condensation.
  • The room is becoming colder. How does this affect a water molecule? Colder and colder until it changes states. Shout out the name of frozen water: ice.
  • Water molecules do not stop moving when frozen, they just move slower. What kind of structure do water molecules form when frozen? Crystalized structures. Think about a snowflake, a lot of intricate straight lines. How can you move like water molecules in a crystalized structure? Sharp movements, angular. Now freeze completely.


  • Let’s group up and talk about your experience
  • How did you show you were a water molecule? What did you discover about how water molecules move?

Lesson: Reviewing the Water Cycle 

  • When you were water molecules, I tested in about some of the water cycle vocabulary. Let’s review the entire water cycle so we can do more drama work with it.
  • Water cycle picture with missing words
    • Invite students up to fill in words (evaporation, condensation, participation)
  • What is evaporation? When water is heated, it becomes water vapor
    • Where does water vapor go, what do they become when they group together? (clouds)
  • What is condensation? When water vapor cools, it turns back into liquid water.
    • Where can you find the effects of condensation? (Dew on leaves, water drops on the outside of a can)
  • What is the participation? (Rain or snow)

Activity: Devising

  • We going to devise a performance about the water cycle
    • Devising means improvising a scene. Creating a play by pretending.
  • Pass out paper and pencils
    • Before we begin devising, write down some questions that you could ask a water molecule that is going to through the water cycle. Also, write down questions that you have about the process of the water cycle and making it into a play?
  • Turn to a partner and read your questions. Try to answer them together!
  • Now as a group, are there any interesting or difficult questions we could discuss as a class?
  • Next, we are going to dividing into three groups: Evaporation, Condensation, and Precipitation.
    • In your groups, start devising a short scene about your word. How can you move your bodies in interesting ways to show your part of the water cycle? How can you answer some of your questions?
  • Give time to devise


  • Each group shares their scene. (Record scenes to help students remember them in future lessons)
  • Did any new questions come up while watching the scenes? (questions about character and plot)