Dothan, Ala.— Wallace Community College hosted the 2012 Dale County Groundwater Festival on Friday, October 5. The College hosts the annual event to educate children on the importance of preserving the water supply.
The event complements fourth graders’ science curriculum, which includes a study of the environment and the detrimental effects of pollution to the limited supply of drinking water. The event includes hands-on experiments to teach students about aquifers, water filtration, and recycling.
Students participated in an “Edible Aquifer” activity to learn about the filtering capability of aquifers. They layered underground bedrock (ice cubes) and soil (ice cream), and then polluted the soil with pesticides (sprinkles) and oil (chocolate syrup). Rainwater (Sprite) was poured over the contents to illustrate how pollutants are carried into the aquifer, where all of our drinking water comes from.
The children then practiced filtering water and discovered there is no way to remove 100 percent of the pollutants. Students learned that all drinking water comes from underground aquifers, and only about 1% of the world’s water is drinkable.
Students also learned about segments of the water cycle. They created a water cycle bracelet using beads representing the sun (yellow), evaporation (clear), clouds (white), condensation (light blue), precipitation (dark blue), runoff (gold), and transpiration (green). They also learned a song called the Water Cycle Boogie to reinforce the lesson.
Between 600 and 800 Dale County fourth graders attended the festival.