School Activities


The here presented School Activity Collection assembles various activities on the vital topics of WASH, energy conservation, biodiversity and waste management. They are a suggestion and helpful tool for those that are looking for ideas on how to do practical, active and fun education with their class, green club, community, etc. To help you find the right activity for your purpose, all activities can be filtered by subject, difficulty, group size and duration.

Furthermore, the School Activity Collection strives to inspire others to become creative by further developing the existing activities and inventing new ones. We invite and encourage you to share your ideas and experiences with others by contributing to the School Activity Collection, to make it grow and let it become a knowledge pool full of creative ideas and inspirations. In case you want to hand in your contribution, you can download activity sheet templates for each subject. Kindly fill out the template and send it to the SuSanA secretariat (info@susana.de).


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Hygiene Activity Template


Everyone is invited to contribute to the activity collection with their own ideas to make it grow and let it become more comprehensive. The sanitation theme template can be downloaded here. Once filled out, it should kindly be sent back to the SuSanA secretariat (info@susana.org) and can be added to the online activity collection.

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Sanitation Activity Template


Everyone is invited to contribute to the activity collection with their own ideas to make it grow and let it become more comprehensive. The sanitation theme template can be downloaded here. Once filled out, it should kindly be sent back to the SuSanA secretariat (info@susana.org) and can be added to the online activity collection.

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Biodiversity Activity Template


Everyone is invited to contribute to the activity collection with their own ideas to make it grow and let it become more comprehensive. The biodiversity theme template can be downloaded here. Once filled out, it should kindly be sent back to the SuSanA secretariat (info@susana.org) and can be added to the online activity collection.

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Waste Activity Template


Everyone is invited to contribute to the activity collection with their own ideas to make it grow and let it become more comprehensive. The waste theme template can be downloaded here. Once filled out, it should kindly be sent back to the SuSanA secretariat (info@susana.org) and can be added to the online activity collection.

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Energy Activity Template


Everyone is invited to contribute to the activity collection with their own ideas to make it grow and let it become more comprehensive. The energy theme template can be downloaded here. Once filled out, it should kindly be sent back to the SuSanA secretariat (info@susana.org) and can be added to the online activity collection.

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Water Activity Template


Everyone is invited to contribute to the activity collection with their own ideas to make it grow and let it become more comprehensive. The water theme template can be downloaded here. Once filled out, it should kindly be sent back to the SuSanA secretariat (info@susana.org) and can be added to the online activity collection.

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Who is responsible for my School Toilet?

The mutual understanding between students and staff is increased and students take better care of the school toilets.


Often the school personnel let it be the cleaner, watchmen or the caretaker, is face and nameless to the students. It is easier to pollute a place or act in vandalism if one doesn’t have empathy with the person on whose life this action has a direct impact because he/she has to clean/repair it. Thus empathy has to be raised to build mutual respect. This activity brings together the school personnel and the students. Students realize the role the caretakers play and are more likely to take care of the toilet facilities themselves.

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Inauguration Party

Students learn to organize students take responsibility for their school.


School toilets are rarely a place that is openly talked about and celebrated. This activity will give students the opportunity to get involved in the planning of a toilet inauguration party. The students will learn to organise and work as a team. Find out from the head of school what budget and/or other support will be available before doing this activity.

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School Toilet Design

Students take part in the design or decoration of their new toilet facilities. Ownership for the school toilets is created.


This activity is supportive when the construction of new toilet facilities is planned. Remind your students to be realistic as there are only limited funds available. Let them think of a) ways to raise the funds or b) less costly ways to reach the same goal. After you have broken the taboo to talk about toilets with the students (see activity “Let’s discuss our school toilets!”), and sensitized them on the issues they face with their current sanitation supply you can now start to involve them in the planning process of the new toilet facilities. Students rarely get involved in the planning of school toilets, although they are the ones who mainly use it. This exercise gives students the power to get involved in the process of planning the building of restrooms and creates ownership. Before you start this task with the students you have to coordinate with the head of school, possibly the school board, the architect and the construction supervision. Which decisions are still open to make, which resources not already acquired and where could the students engage without affecting the construction process too much? Depending on your context, the areas of possible engagement vary. We propose the following: - Tile design (floor/wall) - Cabin colour - Wall painting - Type of bins/soap/toilet paper If you have more time and you are still in an early planning phase, you can consider student consultations where they can bring in their ideas in a participatory process. To bring up gender specific topics like, separate sessions for girls and boys are advisable.

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Tag for Germs

Get the message across that washing hands properly removes germs.


This game sensitizes on the idea of germs being spread via touch and that hand washing removes germs effectively.

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Ecosystem Tag

Students learn about the interdependence of each part of the food chain.


This game introduces the idea of food chains to the students. An example food chain is given, but there is no limitation in changing the food chain.

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Handwashing

To enable the students to value the importance of hand washing with soap and to recognize the effects of neglecting the practice.


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Heat it up with your Solar Cooker!

Enable students to understand the power of renewable energy sources and their potential use in daily life as replacement of non-renewables, as well as the money/work saving effect solar generated power.


A solar cooker is a cooking device which uses the energy of direct sunlight to heat, cook or pasteurize food or water. The solar cooker presented here is a low-tech device and relatively inexpensive for a usage at household level. Advanced, large-scale solar cookers can cook for hundreds of people. Because they use no fuel and have no operating costs, their use worldwide is promoted in order to help reduce fuel costs and air pollution, as well as to slow down the deforestation and desertification caused by gathering firewood for cooking. There are many different ways to build a solar cooker, one is presented here. The internet (YouTube) is a rich source for visualized instructions on how to build your own low-cost DIY solar cooker.

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Wise People Use Less Water

To enable students to understand water usage in domestic and commercial establishments, and to help them identify simple ways of saving water.


Water is the source of all life on earth. This activity helps students understand how much water they use to give them a perspective on their water footprint.

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Irrigation with Grey Water

To find out whether greywater can be used for irrigation and how it effects ornamental plants.


One way to conserve water is to find ways to use it twice. Many households use more water to keep their lawn and garden green than they use for cooking, cleaning and drinking. Therefore, the reuse of greywater (water that has been used for washing or bathing) for irrigation saves water.

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Every Drop Counts

Students realize how much water can be wasted by appliances which are not maintained.


Water is often a scarce commodity. Nevertheless, facilities are frequently not well maintained and large amounts of water are wasted. Have a look around the school compound for leaking taps. If there are any, use them for the experiment. Note: This activity is only suitable in schools with sources of tap water.

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Plastic Bags

Compare the financial and environmental impact of plastic bag with the impact of cloth bag usage.


Plastic bags are hazardous to the environment, to animals and also impacting human health. They are widely used without consideration of the potential bad impacts. Often alternatives exist, though are not used.

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How dangerous is your waste?

Students understand the impact of hazardous substances on human health and the environment


Hazardous waste is waste that poses substantial or potential threats to public health or the environment. Household hazardous waste (HHW) includes household chemicals and other substances for which the owner no longer has a use, such as consumer products sold for home care, personal care, automotive care, pest control and other purposes. Examples include drain cleaners, oil paint, motor oil, antifreeze, fuel, poisons, pesticides, herbicides and rodenticides, lamp ballasts, and some types of cleaning chemicals.

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The Big Dig

To find out the varying biodegradability of different materials


A lot of waste ends up dumped on the streets, and finds its way into the nature unprocessed. Find out which materials are biodegradable and which are not.

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Start by breaking the taboo: Let’s discuss our school toilets!

Find out how the students feel about the school toilet facilities and prepare the ground to improve toilet facilities and sanitation at your school


Before you start talking with a group about toilets and hygiene habits it is helpful to get an impression on how the pupils rate the current sanitation facilities and how they feel using it. This task serves as a sensitization for both sides, to raise the understanding of the existing issues (if there are any) and open the discussion about toilets. Break the taboo on sanitation and start the discussion of their school toilets with your students. This task is an opener to various other activities.

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School Loo Painting Competition

Toilet facilities look more attractive Ownership for the school toilets is created


School toilets are often neglected by the pupils or face the issue of vandalism. This activity will let students make their school toilet more attractive, create a sense of ownership and thereby protect the school toilet from vandalism. Decide with the head of school and/or school board, who will take part in the competition and which part of the toilets should be decorated (e.g. whole building, toilet doors). Materials need to be available to do the painting. Check beforehand, if the painting can be done by the students or whether painters employed by the school will do it.

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Toilet audit: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)

To introduce students to the topic of school sanitation, sensitize them on the state of their school sanitation and encourage them to develop ideas to improve the same.


This exercise turns your students into scientists that do research on the sanitation facilities in their schools. It sensitizes them on issues with their school sanitation facilities, and whether or not there is a lack of facilities within their school. It encourages them to develop their own ideas of improving the facilities. Note: This activity is only useful if the findings from this audit can be presented to the person responsible. In addition, the school should be prepared to put in place some measures to improve the facilities. If not, students could be discouraged

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Toilet audit: Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)

To enable students to recognize issues in the water and sanitation supply and encourage them to develop ideas of improving the same.


This exercise turns your students into field scientists that do research on the water and sanitation supply in their own neighbourhoods.

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Tippy Tap

To show the students how simple it is to build a useful hand washing station.


The tippy tap is a hands free way to wash your hands that is especially appropriate for rural areas where there is no running water. It is operated by a foot lever and thus reduces the chance for bacteria transmission, as the user touches only the soap. It uses only 40 millilitres of water to wash your hands versus 250 millilitres using a mug. Additionally, the used “waste” water can go to plants or back into the water table. It is one of the easiest and cheapest tools that can save water and help kick-start the conversation about hand washing with soap. It can help to increase good hand washing behaviour, and it does so in a fun and easy manner that is especially appealing to children.

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Raj’s map of Bangalore

Help the students understand that open defecation is a health risk.


Understanding the source of a disease is a precondition to stop further infections. This task lets students find out more about how open defecation can be the starting point of an outbreak.

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Power Play

To help students understand why energy should be conserved and show them different ways to do this.


During this activity your students turn into actors that prepare a “power play” on different topics regarding energy conversation. This could be the start of a classroom challenge where students are encouraged to turn off lights and fans, and participate in other energy saving measures.

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Electrical Appliances in Everyday Life

To study the energy use of items the students come across every day in their school life, and potentially at home. Through this they can understand how much energy they use, how much it costs, and how it is not unlimited.


Understanding the amount of energy consumed by the appliances surrounding us and realising the potential financial savings of a more energy saving behaviour is a first step towards a more responsible energy consumption.

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Web of Life

Students understand how everything that surrounds us is inter-related and inter-dependent, as well as the impact of a missing link in the global ecosystem.


Ecosystems are highly interlinked, complex structures. The importance of a single unit in the system can easily be neglected by the overload of complexity. Nevertheless, each part of an ecosystem has its defined role and importance that is worth being regarded.

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Compost it in the Compost Pit!

Students understand that organic household waste is a resource of nutrients that can be recovered and reused by composting.


Decomposition of biodegradable “waste” is a crucial part of the natural nutrient cycle and “waste management system”. Organic leftovers are a rich source of nutrients, thus can rather be seen as a resource, than actual “waste”. The nutrients can easily be recovered by a composting process, that besides reduces the amount of waste produced per household.

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Clean Water with solar energy using a solar still

Make students understand that water can be made drinkable with easy to find resources, just by using the heat of the sun.


When water evaporates it leaves all of its impurities behind. Evaporation removes impurities, such as salts and heavy metals, and eliminates microbiological organisms. The end result is water cleaner than the purest rainwater.

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Build your own water filter

Students understand how water is naturally treated through sediment filtration by applying the same method in a small scale experiment and adding charcoal for improved cleaning results.


Clean water which can be used for drinking or cooking is rare in many rural areas. Therefore, it is important for people not to waste clean water (water conservation) and also to know of simple ways to clean the water. Please note: the water cleaned by this simple filtration method is NOT suitable for drinking, as it may still contain harmful components. However, it could be used for cooking or drinking after it has been boiled for at least 8 minutes.

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Build your own water filter

Students understand how water is naturally treated through sediment filtration by applying the same method in a small scale experiment.


This activity informs the students about simple and natural ways to clean water, and how they could potentially be used to treat drinking water. Please note: the water cleaned by this simple filtration method is NOT suitable for drinking, as it may still contain harmful components.

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Sacred Toilet Rules

Create ownership and maintain newly constructed sanitation facilities clean and protect them from vandalism.


This activity is important especially when the school has new or refurbished toilets. A devastating fact is that newly constructed, refurbished or cleaned sanitation facilities often return to their old condition soon after the implementation is finished. This activity intends to counter this development with the setting of jointly agreed rules.

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Make your toilet beautiful!


Raised personal value of an object and ownership protects objects from vandalism. Different small measures can be taken to increase ownership and prevent vandalism. Some suggestions are found in this activity sheet.

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What goes into the loo?

Prevent damage of the sanitation facility through misuse and empower correct behaviour in the bathroom.


Misuse of sanitation facilities through falsely disposed waste often poses a problem to either the facilities, or the waste water treatment plants and thus leads to major damage, system failure and costs. Therefore, students learn in this activity which objects must not be flushed in the toilet, and the impacts of wrong disposal.

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Recycling Memory

To make students think about the recycling and reusing of waste, while having fun!


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Handwashing Competition

Students will understand that water is not sufficient to wash germs off their hands and demonstrate how to wash their hands correctly.


Using soap for hand-washing is the most effective and inexpensive way to prevent diarrhoeal diseases, therefore we present a fun hand washing competition you can do with your students. The activity can be played inside or outside. The students learn how germs are spread and that hands need to be washed properly with soap to get rid of the germs.

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Germ Glitter Game

Students will understand that water is not sufficient to wash germs off their hands and they demonstrate how to wash their hands correctly.


The Germ Glitter Game will help children learn how germs are spread. They will also learn that they must wash their hands for a full 20 seconds to more thoroughly clean them of germs. All proper handwashing techniques will be reinforced.

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The Bean Bag Game

Students learn about the six critical moments one should wash hands.


The Bean Bag Game introduces in a playful way the six critical moments when one should wash hands. Some material is required for the activity. You can prepare the activity alone or let the students craft everything that is needed for the activity. a. Bean bag: fill linen with lentils/sand, close linen with rubber bands, cut the rest of the linen off and draw or write the respective source (as listed below) on it. The bean bags represent germs that have their source from one of the six critical moments one should wash hands: • after playing with a pet, • after using the bathroom; • after sneezing, • coughing or blowing the nose; • after touching a cut or sore; • after playing outside; • before eating.

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The Potato Experiment

Students understand the importance of personal health and hygiene.


This experiment shows students the importance of hand hygiene and demonstrates how fast bacteria spread by physical contact. The potato that has been touched by all students should start to rot the fastest.

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On a mission: Berries, Birds and Bees

This activity explains the importance of different pollinating agents like birds, butterflies, bees and bats, and the effects if one of them were completely taken out. It helps students to understand the correlation between flora and fauna.


During this activity your students turn into biologists that observe their environment.

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How dangerous is your Waste?

To help students understand the impact of hazardous substances on human health and the environment.


Hazardous waste is waste that poses substantial or potential threats to public health or the environment. Household hazardous waste [HHW] includes household chemicals and other substances for which the owner no longer has a use, such as consumer products sold for home care, personal care, automotive care, pest control and other purposes. Examples include drain cleaners, oil paint, motor oil, antifreeze, fuel, poisons, pesticides, herbicides and rodenticides, lamp ballasts, and some types of cleaning chemicals. It is important for students to learn and explore more about the hazardous waste [Toxic waste] which they come across in their daily life and learn safe handling techniques as and when they encounter such waste

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Clean Water with Solar Energy using a Solar Still

Make students understand that water can be made drinkable with easy to find resources, just by using the heat of the sun.


When water evaporates it leaves all of its impurities behind. Evaporation removes impurities, such as salts and heavy metals, and eliminates microbiological organisms. The end result is water cleaner than the purest rainwater.

read more & download …