Earth Partnership for Schools
RAIN GARDEN PROJECTS
The Earth Partnership for Schools program developed a pilot rain garden curricular sampler for K-12 schools. Use these activities to build a rain garden on your school grounds with your students. Please fill out the following feedback form to share with us what went well and what could be changed to help us improve the quality of these materials.
Rain Garden Curricular Sampler
Why Build Rain Gardens?
Learn how rain gardens improve water quality and lesson impacts from storm water in the local watershed.
- A Rain Garden Year: Students take part in a play that illustrates the seasonal march that happens in a rain garden as native plants bloom and set seed.
A Rain Garden Year (PDF 58KB)
- Conjunction Function: Students use observation, critical thinking, and scientific skills to learn about rain gardens and how they function to improve the health of a watershed.
Conjunction_Function (PDF 36KB)
- Bimodal Botany Bouquet: Students are introduced to rain garden plant species.
Bimodel_Botany_Bouquet (PDF 46KB)
Perform Site Analysis
Investigate school grounds and collect information for developing a rain garden.
- Noting Notable Features: Students survey their schoolyard and begin to identify characteristics and features relevant to building a rain garden.
Noting_Notable_Features_Field_Sheets (PDF 53KB)
Noting_Noteable_Features_for_Rain_Gardens (PDF 42KB)
- Follow the Drop: Students observe and collect information about water runoff on their school property.
Follow_the_Drop (PDF 61KB)
Identifying Your Soil for Rain Gardens:
Students identify soil type at their proposed rain garden location(s) using a soil texture feel test key.
- Exploring the Flow of Water Through Soils: Students measure water flow into and through soils.
Infiltration_Test_for_Rain_Gardens (PDF 75KB)
Infiltration_Test_Field_Sheets (PDF 76KB)
- Measuring Slope for Rain Gardens: Students measure and calculate percent slope for their rain garden project.
Measuring_Slope_for_Rain_Gardens (PDF 45KB)
Plan the Rain Garden
Locate and design a rain garden including determining size, shape and species composition.
- Sizing a Rain Garden:
Students calculate the size of a rain garden using measuring tools, tables, and formulas.
Sizing_a_Rain_Garden (PDF 108 KB)
- Designing a Rain Garden:
Students create a rain garden design and optional planting plan.
Designing_a_Rain_Garden (PDF 58KB)
- Rain Garden Species Selection:
Students create a list of native species for their school rain garden site as determined by environmental, ecological, aesthetic, and educational criteria.
Rain_Garden_Species_Selection (PDF 57KB)
Rain_Garden_Species_Selection_Worksheet (PDF 10KB)
Rain_Garden_Species_List (PDF 108KB)
Prepare and Plant the Rain Garden
Layout and plant a rain garden.
- What's a Square Foot Anyway?: Teams of students layout a rain garden design plan on the school grounds using a scale drawing and square foot templates.
What's_a_Square_Foot_Anyway (PDF 242KB)
- Planting a School Rain Garden: Students learn how to plant while planting transplants in their school rain garden.
Planting_a_School_Rain_Garden (PDF 38KB)
Maintain a Rain Garden
Students care for and maintain their rain garden.
- Rain Garden Maintenance: Students learn about plant and garden care while managing a newly planted rain garden.
Rain_Garden_Maintenance (PDF 42KB)
Make Community Connections
Prepare outreach materials to inform the community about their project.
- Getting the Word Out: Students write and develop outreach materials such as a brochure, flyer, door hanger, article or poster that informs the community about their rain garden project.
Getting_the_Word_Out (PDF 49KB)
Resources and Glossary