Do we use more water for toilet or shower?

Grade level:  5 – 6th grades

Skills: Circle graphs

Related environmental issues: Water

The circle graph below shows how the average American family uses water at home.

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1. For what purposes does the average American family use the most water?

2. For what purposes does the average American family use more water, shower or washing machine?

3. The average American family uses 300 gallons of water a day. How many gallons of water does the average American family use for shower?

4. The average American family loses a lot of water to leaky toilets, appliances and faucets. What percentage of water is wasted through leaks?

5. How many gallons of water does the average American family lose through leaks a day?

Sources: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2018. How We Use Water

To find and fix water leaks, visit here (Water Footprint, 2018. Indoor Water Leaks)

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Answer keys

  1. Toilet
  2. Shower
  3. 300 x 0.2 = 60 (gallons)
  4. 100 – 24 – 20 – 19 – 17 – 8 = 12 (%)
  5. 300 x 0.12 = 36 (gallons)

Which car is clearer – Ford F150, Toyota RAV4 or Honda Civic?

Grade level:  5th grades

Skills:  Multiplication and division (decimals)

Related environmental issues: Air / Climate change / Energy

Area level: National, State, Regional, Household

Burning gasoline in motor vehicles is one of the biggest causes of air pollution in the United States. How much gasoline your car uses is strongly connected to how dirty the air in your area is. The table below shows how many miles three cars can run on one gallon of gasoline. Those three cars are the top-8 best-selling vehicles during the first half of 2018 in the United States.

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1. Which car can go half as far as Honda Civic on one gallon of gasoline?

2. An average American drives 280 miles a week. How much gasoline does an owner of each car use on average?

3. Which car among the three is more environmentally friendly? Why? Explain.

4. If the price of gasoline today is $3 a gallon, how much money does an owner of each car need to spend for gasoline in a week on average?

5. Which car among the three would you like to by? Why? Explain.

Source: 1) Business Insider, 2018 2) fuel economy.gov, 2018 3) U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, 2018

Note: Average Annual Miles per Driver: 13,476 miles (U.S. Department of Transportation, 2018)


Answer Key

  1. Ford F150
  2. Ford F150: 280 ÷ 16 = 17.5 (gallons)   Toyota Rav 4: 280 ÷ 25 = 11.2 (gallons)   Honda Civic:  280 ÷ 32 = 8.75 (gallons)
  3. Honda Civic: It uses less gasoline and emits less air pollutants into the air.
  4. Ford F150: 17.5 x 3 = $52.5  Toyota Rav 4: 11.2 x 3 = $33.6  Honda Civic:  8.75 x 3 = $26.25
  5. Answers may vary