Welcome to Water in Extreme Environments!

Water in Extreme Environments Unit Cover image collage of a planet and one of its moons

Water in Extreme Environments engages youth in collaborative teams to engineer water filters with basic materials, and by playing a game to learn about where water can be found in our solar system.

Science and Engineering Overview: 

  • Youth explore how much, how accessible, and how usable water is on earth and elsewhere in our solar system. They consider if water is potentially habitable on other planetary bodies, and propose a planetary body to explore based on evidence of water. (Science Activities S1-S3)
  • Life on Earth requires access to clean water, and as populations grow, the demand for water increases. Youth participating in this unit become water resource engineers as they use the steps of the Engineering Design Process to design creative ways to reuse water (Engineering Activities P1-A6).

Step 1: Get Your Educator Guides and Materials

All PLANETS Units are Research-Based and Educator and Youth Tested. They include:

  1. Free, printable educator guides.
  2. Free, printable student journals/notebooks.
  3. Videos and additional pdf resources to support educators in preparing materials, addressing 21st Century Skills, building content knowledge, and facilitating successful youth collaboration.

Step 2: Get Ready to Teach - Educator Videos, Quick Tips, and Digital Resources

Press the thumbnails below to see the videos, quick tips, and resources for each activity.

Engineering Activities

Science Activities

Step 3: Improve Teamwork, Collaboration, and Build 21st Century Skills

PLANETS curriculum already supports the development of 21st Century skills. Try our 21st Century Skill strategies to better understand and enhance the process.

  • Collaboration
  • Communication
  • Creativity
  • Critical Thinking

Use our FAQ's to address common questions for Space Hazards Activities.

Step 4: Going Beyond

Got youth hooked on STEM and space science? Try these endless connections:

Interested in becoming a planetary science educator?

  • Participate in PLANETS professional development and research;
  • attend a conference; or
  • pursue other amazing opportunities offered through NASA.