For those who have wondered about the age of the water you drink, you may be surprised to know that what’s sitting in your glass may be nearly as old as the Earth itself. Thanks to the water cycle, the same water molecules that were first created or perhaps came to the Earth in comets and meteors when the planet was forming are the same that is sitting in your glass. As you can see from the water cycle PowerPoint diagram, the process itself is one that helps explain how water can be so old.
How the Water Cycle Works
Although the amount of water on the Earth may appear unlimited, the truth is that there is a finite amount available. But the amount stays constant thanks to the water cycle process which continually moves the water molecules through four different states and repeats its over and over again.
Evaporation: This is where sunlight heats up bodies of water in the ocean, lakes, rivers, streams, ponds, and puddles. If water is exposed to sunlight and begins to warm, it starts to turn from a liquid to a gaseous state. The steam that you see rising from the bodies of water is the water cycle process in action.
A part of evaporation is a process known as transpiration, which is the water released from plants and grasses that evaporates and rises into the sky to form clouds.
Condensation: When the water vapor rises to a certain height, it cools and condenses back into liquid which forms clouds. You can see condensation in action when you pour a glass of cold water and set it outside on a hot day. You’ll see water forming on the outside of the glass. The condensation comes from the cold water turning into water vapor and then returning to its liquid state when it touches the cold glass.
Precipitation: At the point when the air cannot continue to hold the water vapor, the clouds become heavier and it comes back down to the Earth in the form of rain, sleet, snow, or hail depending on the temperature, wind, and other factors.
Collection: As the water falls to the Earth, it collects in the oceans, lakes, rivers, and other bodies of water. If it should go into the soil and not evaporate or undergo transpiration, it will sink deeper until it reaches underground streams or bodies of water that move it towards collection points that are exposed to the sunlight.
Once collected, the water undergoes the evaporation process again and turns into water vapor rising into the sky. Understanding the water cycle starts by considering the journey that the water has taken so many times over its lifetime. As the water cycle PowerPoint diagram demonstrates, it is a process that is so efficient that it has provided essentially the same water molecules rotating from the clouds to the ground, into the soil, and through the process of evaporation back to the clouds for perhaps billions of years.
Best used in science class and other educational settings, The Water Cycle PowerPoint Diagram can help your students learn about or refresh their knowledge on the water cycle and all of its processes. The Water Cycle PowerPoint Diagram features a single slide that has text and colors you can edit, or you can leave it exactly the same and teach straight from it. It discusses issues such as evaporation, condensation, precipitation, infiltration, transpiration, surface runoff, thorough flow and more. On this slide there is an ocean, a mountain, sun and rainclouds to illustrate the points.