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Everybody in the world lives in a watershed. Where does the rain mainly drain where you live? Follow the water all the way to the sea!
About 70% of the Earth's surface is covered with water, and only about 1% is fresh water. Most of that 1% is found in polar ice. As part of the natural water cycle, precipitation of fresh water comes to the Earth. Most is soaked into the ground (infiltration) or enters surface waters (runoff). Find out more about water usage issues in your area.
A watershed is all the land area from which water drains into a particular stream or river. Research the watershed you live in, from the small watershed area that may lead to a local small stream to the larger watershed that may lead to a major river and then on to an ocean.
Trace the waterways! Obtain a road map or trail map of your area. Use a Blue Crayola Washable Marker to trace major rivers and smaller streams. Find out which streams flow into which rivers. Where does the water finally reach an ocean?
Predict the watersheds! Use Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils to outline and label areas that you think might drain water to a particular stream. Use a different color for each area that drains into each stream. Which watersheds together drain into larger bodies of water?
Check out your predictions! Find out about the actual watersheds. In the United States, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Web site is a great place to visit. Erase and revise your watershed predictions if you need to. Use Washable Markers to label and brightly shade each watershed area. Add arrows to major rivers and streams to show in which direction the water flows. Compare your predictions and findings with those of your classmates.
High school students can teach elementary students about sustainability and environmental issues with this community ser
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