The water cycle is vital to human life because it delivers fresh water all over the globe. Most of the water on Earth is located in the oceans, which are too salty for humans to use. The water cycle helps distribute fresh, usable water for human use.
Precipitation occurs when water is transferred from the atmosphere to the surface of the Earth. It can be in the form of rain, snow, sleet or hail. After the precipitation falls to the surface, it is absorbed by plants or the soil to grow food for human consumption. The precipitation can flow along the surface to enter into streams, lakes, wetlands and oceans.
Evaporation is the process of the water cycle during which the liquid water is evaporated into a gas. It occurs when the water is warmed by the sun and evaporates back into the Earth's atmosphere. During this process the water is purified, and impurities are removed. This helps maintain the cleanliness of the water.
The water cycle is the continuous movement of water from one reservoir to the next. The water cycle is also known as the "hydrologic cycle." The water in this cycle never leaves the Earth's atmosphere.