Thursday, July 16, 2015

It's Water-Wise Wednesday with Frannie the Fish! {Awesome Aquifer Kits}

Frannie is so excited to tell you all about the Awesome Aquifer Kit from The Groundwater Foundation.  The Awesome Aquifer Kit is a fun, reusable model you can use to see how groundwater works!  This model also comes in handy when working towards your "Let's Keep It Clean" and "Ask Me About Groundwater" patches.

The Awesome Aquifer Kit includes:
  • Activity Guide with vocabulary terms defined, an explanation of what groundwater is and why it is important, and instructions for six advanced groundwater demonstrations.
  • Gravel to represent fractured rock, gravel, and soil particles underneath the earth's surface where groundwater is stored.
  • Sand to represent the land surface and a different kind of soil water moves through.
  • Modeling clay can be used to create a confined aquifer, an aquifer that is bounded between layers of substances like clay or dense rock, through which water cannot move.
  • A nylon hose represents a well and a syringe functions as the pump.
  • Panty hose and a rubber band create the screen cap for your well to prevent sediment and rocks from being pumped with your well water.
  • A soap pump can be utilized as a second well.
  • Food coloring is used to represent a contaminant, so you can easily observe its movement through your aquifer.
  • A small measuring cup is used to pump your contaminated water into, you will then use the activated carbon (charcoal) provided to "clean" your contaminated water.  The filter paper provided will be placed over the small measuring cup and rubber banded to allow the water to pass through, you can then recharge your aquifer with your clean water.  Recharge is water added to a groundwater aquifer.  For example, when rainwater seeps into the ground.

There are lots of different things you can learn by using the Awesome Aquifer Kit!  Use the kit to:
  • Create the physical parts of an aquifer and learn groundwater vocabulary.
  • Recognize groundwater and surface water's connection.
  • Discuss if groundwater is a renewable resource.
  • Investigate porosity (capacity to hold water) of different soil types.
  • Measure how fast water moves.
  • Observe groundwater's role in the water cycle.
  • Learn about and observe how contamination affects an aquifer.
  • Utilize clean up strategies to treat your contaminated aquifer.
Learn one way to use your Kit with our handy how-to video.  Check out Frannie's previous post about the Nebraska Children's Groundwater Festival to see what students learned with the Awesome Aquifer Kits!  

Use the Awesome Aquifer Kit to teach your troop about groundwater!  Order your Kit today!

Has your troop already used the Awesome Aquifer Kits?  Share your experiences!