In secondary earth science, students are expected to understand various physical and chemical properties and the planet’s dynamics. Along with, the energies absorbed and released throughout the earth’s systems. Numerous connections can be made between movement and the earth’s systems. For this Dances with Water Arts Integration lesson, we will look at the hydrologic cycle.

Next Generation Science

HS-ESS2 Earth’s Systems
The abundance of liquid water on Earth’s surface and its unique combination of physical and chemical properties are central to the planet’s dynamics.

Fine Arts: Dance

Anchor Standard 1: Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work
Explore a variety of stimuli for sourcing movement to develop an improvisational or choreographed dance study. Analyze the process and the relationship between the stimuli and the movement.



After exploring the water cycle, have students create various symbols for each stage of the cycle: evaporation, transpiration, condensation precipitation, runoff, and infiltration.  Have students draw each of the symbols on separate cards, and use the symbols as inspiration for movement phrases.  You can advance expectations by setting criteria. Such as, requiring the energy or the level of the water cycle stage, and the movement to be the same.

Based on your class objectives, you require students to order the movement in the same order of the cycle or in reverse order.  In groups, have students create full compositions based on the water cycle.  You can check for understanding by having the audience guess the stage of the cycle performed. Then,  justify why the movement fits the stage of the cycle, or having another group design the order of the composition.

Not only are students experimenting with movement composition and comprehending the hydrologic cycle, they also explore motif writing through the use of symbols and creating physical and visual representations to better understand the cycle of water through our earth’s systems.