Earth is the Water Planet Video

American Geosciences Institute
Type Category
Instructional Materials
This resource, vetted by NSTA curators, is provided to teachers along with suggested modifications to make it more in line with the vision of the NGSS. While not considered to be "fully aligned," the resources and expert recommendations provide teachers with concrete examples and expert guidance using the EQuIP rubric to adapted existing resources. Read more here.



This 4:23 video, Big Idea 5: Earth is the Water Planet, is created by the American Geoscience Institute (AGI) and helps the viewer to understand how water was formed on Earth and why water is so important to Earth. It also highlights where water, in its different states, is located on Earth.  

This video is part of a 10 short video series developed by the American Geological Institute to explain the core concepts as identified by the U.S. National Science Foundation-funded Earth Science Literacy Initiative (  The AGI also provides educational activities exploring each of the nine "Big Ideas of Earth Science" illustrated in the video series at  Earth Science Week (  The activities and other videos are not part of this curated resource.

Intended Audience

Educator and learner
Educational Level
  • Grade 2
  • Elementary School
Access Restrictions

Free access - The right to view and/or download material without financial, registration, or excessive advertising barriers.

Performance Expectations

2-ESS2-3 Obtain information to identify where water is found on Earth and that it can be solid or liquid.

Clarification Statement: none

Assessment Boundary: none

This resource is explicitly designed to build towards this performance expectation.

Comments about Including the Performance Expectation
To meet the Performance Expectation students must be encouraged to record the information that they are learning about water into a science notebook or on a teacher created chart so that the student can organize the information, review it and use it for reflection with the purpose of developing questions about the information about water that has been obtained.

Science and Engineering Practices

This resource appears to be designed to build towards this science and engineering practice, though the resource developer has not explicitly stated so.

Comments about Including the Science and Engineering Practice
To ensure that the full Practice is met, this video should be used as a complex text. Students should listen to the video at least three times. The purpose of the first viewing is to understand the gist of the video. During the second viewing students record places that water is found on and around the Earth. During the third viewing the students include the state of matter that water is in at each location that they recorded during the second viewing. After the teacher is confident the students have an understanding of the material, the teacher should have students reflect on questions they may now have about water, for example: Does the earth have more or less water now than 1,000 years ago? Where does water that is on the ground come from? How does water get into the oceans? What are clouds made of? How does rain form? How does solid ice float on liquid water?

Disciplinary Core Ideas

This resource is explicitly designed to build towards this disciplinary core idea.

Comments about Including the Disciplinary Core Idea
The Core idea is addressed in the watching and understanding to this video. It should be noted that some of the information in the video goes beyond the constraints of ESS2.C as it also describes water in its gases state and the special properties of water.

Crosscutting Concepts

This resource is explicitly designed to build towards this crosscutting concept.

Comments about Including the Crosscutting Concept
To ensure that this Crosscutting Concept is address emphasis should be given to students observations of real life situations. Observe a puddle after a rain and continue observations throughout the day. Observe a piece of ice on a hot sidewalk. Observe an ocean, lake, pond, or stream. If none exist use other print or media materials.

Resource Quality

  • Alignment to the Dimensions of the NGSS: Provides opportunities to develop and use specific, grade-appropriate elements of the Science Practice, Disciplinary Core Idea, and the Crosscutting Concept, working together to support students in three-dimensional learning to make sense of the phenomenon of water; where it is located on earth and in which state it is in. A teacher will need to be very intentional when designing a learning experience for the students that encourages them to ask questions about water,otherwise, it could become a task of memorization of facts only and completely miss the NGSS directives.

  • Instructional Supports: This resource is a video and does not provide Instructional Supports. The teacher may want to develop a chart for the students to record the information that they learn from the video and then provide real life connects of water to the student's experiences.

  • Monitoring Student Progress: The teacher will need to develop a rubric to rate student discussion participation, science notebook writings, and rating questions that students ask about water on earth.

  • Quality of Technological Interactivity: It is recommended that the teacher use this video as a complex text. Students should listen to the video at least 3 times. The first time with the purpose of getting the gist of the video. On the second viewing students record places that water is found on and around the Earth. During the third viewing the students include the state of matter that water is in in each location that they recorded in their second viewing.