After reading and discussing Linda Sue Park’sA Long Walk to Water, our sixth grade students had the opportunity to experience firsthand the challenge of “fetching water.” Nya, an 11-year-old girl from the story, walked twice a day, every day, for over eight hours to bring water back for her family. As a culminating experience, our students hiked down to the Brandywine Creek, collected water and toted it back uphill to school, spilling as little as possible. A similar experience was designed for our remote learners to carry out at home. If you see a sixth grader, stop and ask them about their “Long Walk to Water” and how having a source of clean water from a tap can change the lives of people around the world.
—Laurie Edinger and Jill Zehner, Middle School English