January 19th, 2017
Although, we may not get the chance to be in the garden because of the rain, so happy that California is getting this much-needed rain! Since it’s raining, why not talk about the water cycle?
With the 5/6th graders, we started off by asking what the students already knew about the water cycle. I had a drawing on the board of mountains, land and ocean with clouds. As the students raised their hands and pointed our parts of the water cycle, I would write it on board. Once all three parts were discussed, Evaporation, condensation and precipitation, we dug a little deeper into the water cycle. We talked about infiltration, ground water, how there are mini water cycles within the big cycle of water. There are animals in between, plants, trees, roots, lakes, ponds and many more involved within the big water cycle. How the urban city blocks infiltration, and in turn, keeps away ground water, and that it also impacts the water in terms of pollution from the city roads.
We closed it off with a small demonstration of water being poured on good soil with compost, and soil with no organic matter. It was simply to represent soil of gardens and the other was to represent soil that has either been destroyed, no organic matter or a hard surface. Water filtered through the rich soil easily, and for the other one, water did not filter through and instead flooded. The conclusion was if we had many gardens with rich soil, or open land with good organic matter and not asphalt/cement within the city, how much ground water we could save when it rains in LA, and how good it would be for the water cycle!
With the younger ones, I read a story of “Mr. Drippy” a water drop that goes through the water cycle. We ended with a labeling and coloring activity of the water cycle.