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Water in the desert

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Geography Activities

Activity - Traditional Methods

Geography Activities

Activity - Modern Methods

Geography Activities

Activity - Shaduf Irrigation


Shaduf Task One: Small Scale

Using a maximum of 6 drinking straws, 4 cocktail sticks, some plasticine and a sheet of paper construct the contraption described below:

The shadoof consists of an upright frame on which is suspended a long pole or branch, at a distance of about one-fifth of its length from one end. At the long end of this pole hangs a bucket, skin bag, or bitumen-coated reed basket, while the short end carries a weight (clay, stone, or similar) which serves as the counterpoise of a lever. When correctly balanced, the counterweight will support a half-filled bucket, so some effort is used to pull an empty bucket down to the water, but only the same effort is needed to lift a full bucket.

With an almost effortless swinging and lifting motion, the waterproof vessel is used to scoop up and carry water from one body of water (typically, a river or pond) to another. At the end of each movement, the water is emptied out into runnels that convey the water along irrigation ditches in the required direction. It is estimated that a shadoof can raise over 2,500 litres per day. | Source


Shaduf Task Two: Large Scale

Time to scale up your model - using string, bamboo canes and anything else your teacher provides for you. A description of such an activity can be found on page 105 of Creative Outdoor Work with Young People.
The ability to tie a clove hitch may be useful when constructing your shaduf - this video clip will help:

Shaduf Task Three: Reflection

Use Google Image Search to find an image of an actual shaduf. Draw or take a photograph of your shaduf. Are there many similarities between the actual shaduf and your design? What is the aim of a shaduf? How could you have improved your design? How well did you work as a member of a team to complete this task? on facebook
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