Integrated Arts Series: Lesson 4 - Water Cycle Flipbooks - MetroFamily Magazine
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Integrated Arts Series: Lesson 4 – Water Cycle Flipbooks

By Oklahoma A+ Schools

Reading Time: 3 minutes 

For the fourth installment of this ongoing series of easy, fun and engaging arts integration activities that kids and families can enjoy together, we’re exploring cycles. Integrating the arts with students’ everyday academics is proven to increase comprehension and retention! Whether your kids are learning virtually, in a classroom setting, or homeschooled, there are plenty of opportunities to learn together with this water cycle activity.

Lesson 2: Water: Where does it come from and where does it go? 

All living things need water to live. 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered in water. 96.5% of the Earth’s water is found in its oceans, but that doesn’t mean it always stays there. Water is constantly moving through the water cycle and changes from liquid, to gas, to solid and back again. These are all different states of water. The heat from the sun causes water on land to turn into gas, evaporate, which can condense into clouds which can precipitate, as rain or snow, which drops back to the earth. The movement of water through its different states and to different locations is called the water cycle. This cycle is important to all living things. Why do you think we need the water cycle?

Water Cycle Flip Books

A flipbook is a small book of drawings that gradually change and, when flipped, animate a scene. This type of manual animation uses still images to create a moving scene.

  1. Gather your materials:
    1. A pad of sticky notes or a small stack of regular paper
    2. Drawing materials (pencil, markers, crayons, etc.)
  2. Choose a topic from below either based on grade level or interest. Research to learn more about it if it is a new topic for you. Oklahoma Academic Standards for Science are referenced below. (ie: P.PS1.4 means 2nd grade, physical science, standard 1.4)  If you would like more information, please visit
    1. General: What is the water cycle? How does water change form?
    2. 2nd Grade: (2.PS1.4 ) Construct an argument with evidence that some changes caused by heating or cooling can be reversed and some cannot.
    3. 3rd Grade: (2.ESS2.3 ) Identify where water is found on Earth and that it can be solid or liquid.
    4. 4th Grade: (4.ESS2.1 ) Conduct investigations on the effect of water on the relative rate of weathering and erosion.
    5. 5th Grade: (5.PS1.1 ) Develop a model to describe that matter is made of particles that are too small to be seen.
  3. Plan your flipbook illustration: choose how you will display your topic using manual animation. For example, if you chose the water cycle, you may choose to follow a drop of water as it evaporates, forms a cloud, and then rains back down. If you are going to explore the topic of weather erosion, you may show the way that water creates a new river down a mountainside. Whatever you choose to illustrate, make sure it is one idea that can be drawn easily.
  4. Count how many pages you will need and be sure to have that many pages for your book as you begin to draw. You may need more pages than you think at first, so it’s a good idea to have extra just in case.  Each page you will add a bit more to your drawing.
  5. Start with the last page of your flipbook and draw your first illustration on the bottom, right-hand side of your paper. This illustration is actually the base drawing – each page will use this drawing and keep adding more to it. Make the drawing dark enough you can see it when you lay the next page on top of it.
  6. Lay down your next page. You should be able to see through to your first illustration. Draw the same picture with a very small change that leads toward your next idea.
  7. Continue this way, laying down one page at a time, until you have completed sharing your topic.
  8. Hold the stack of papers down and use your thumb to flip through from the bottom to the top to see your very own manual animation in action!

Integrated arts activities are created by certified teachers and provided by Oklahoma A+ Schools to meet the Oklahoma Academic Standards across multiple content areas. Find more activities at

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