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Cold Water with Hidden Surprises



Cold Water with Hidden Surprises
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.51

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    acronym, anti-epileptic, antidepressant, cholesterol-fighting, embryonic, miniscule, providers, reproductive, trillion, medication, long-term, multiplied, effective, affected, flushing, poses
     content words:    Associated Press, New Jersey, Christian Daughton, Environmental Protection Agency, North America, North Sea, In South Africa


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Cold Water with Hidden Surprises
By Colleen Messina
  

1     A cold, sparkling glass of water is refreshing on a hot, summer day. However, even clear water might not be so pure. It might have some unpleasant, hidden surprises in it. Scientists have discovered small amounts of drugs in drinking water supplies. This might sound harmless, but scientists are concerned that these drugs might hurt people and wildlife.
 
2     The Associated Press conducted a five-month study. They took samples of water in about 24 major cities. The Associated Press is an American news agency. It is owned by newspapers and also television and radio stations. The AP studied water samples from California and New Jersey. They also studied samples from Michigan and Kentucky. These water supplies serve at least 41 million Americans. Most people aren't aware that there might be some secrets in their drinking water.
 
3     One person who was concerned about these secret ingredients in drinking water was Christian Daughton, an EPA scientist. EPA is an acronym for the Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA has existed since 1970. Its mission is to protect human health. It also protects the environment. Daughton said, "People think that if they take a medication, their body absorbs it and it disappears, but of course that's not the case." Some of the drugs pass through a person's body and wind up in the toilet. Some of these drugs cannot be filtered out by water treatment systems.

Paragraphs 4 to 8:
For the complete story with questions: click here for printable


Extended Activities:

1.  Do a survey of ten of your friends and ask them what kind of water they drink. How many drank bottled water? How many drank tap water? Did some friends drink both?

2.  Research the water treatment system for your town or city. Write up a brief description of the system.



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