Irrigation Lesson Plan for Elementary School

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

This lesson plan will help you teach your students about irrigation, how it works, and why it's important. Students will read a text lesson about irrigation, experiment with irrigation, and engineer an original irrigation model.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define 'irrigation'
  • explain how irrigation works
  • describe why irrigation is important to our lives


1 - 1.5 hours


  • Copies of the lesson Irrigation Lesson for Kids, one for each student
  • Styrofoam cups
  • Straws
  • Aluminum trays
  • Soil
  • Seeds
  • Tubing, bought from a hardware store or home-made tubing made from wrapping paper rolls and duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Water

Key Vocabulary

  • Irrigation
  • Freshwater

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.5.1

Quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.5.3

Explain the relationships or interactions between two or more individuals, events, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text based on specific information in the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.5.4

Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 5 topic or subject area.


  • If making your own tubing, have students cut wrapping paper rolls down the middle to make two curved gutters.
  • Make their 'tubes' water-proof by wrapping them in duct tape.
  • Have students make several rolls and set them aside for the lesson.


  • Turn on the faucet in your classroom. If you don't have one, bring some water in and show students, then ask:
    • Where did this water come from?
    • How did it get to our classroom?
  • Give students a few minutes to jot some ideas down, then break into small groups to share and discuss:
    • What would it be like if we weren't able to move water from one place to another? Where would we live?
    • How long ago do you think people started moving water?

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