Thank you for your interest in our youth education programs. This is a collection of lesson plans and resources we’ve found to be helpful in developing water and environmental literacy. 

Research shows students learn the most on field trips when they can connect concepts covered with regular classroom learning.  If you’re coming on a Field trip to the Center soon, be sure to check out our Prepare for your Trip Tips for more ideas on preparing for your trip.

These lessons were picked to support learning before and after participating in Waterwise Community Center programs. However, they can also be used as stand-alone lessons. Most lessons can easily be adapted to grades beyond the range indicated. 

We also recommend the Environmental Education Collaborative of San Bernardino and Riverside counties’ Environmental Learning Resources Guide to identify sites and programs that can further support your class.

Also, we encourage you to check out our educator newsletter, which is packed with videos, resources, and programs specially crafted by our staff for K-12 teachers. The newsletter will include important details about our field trip program, poster contest, and special events we offer throughout the school year.





 Water Ecosystems Conservation

Water Cycle (TK-K)

Water Cycle in a Sandwich Bag Lesson Plan Greensboro Science Center X    
Discover Water Interactive Website Lesson Plan Project WET X   X
Ocean World: Earth Globe Toss Game Lesson Plan
NASA Jet Propulsion Lab X   X
Where Does Our Water Come From? Video Curiosity Quest  X   X

Plants and Pollinators (1st Grade)

Pollinator Parade Lesson Plan Project Seasons   X  
Pollinator Activity Guide Activity Guide   X X
What Color is Your Leaf? Lesson Plan CA Academy of Sciences   X  

Watershed Stewards (2nd Grade)

Meet the Santa Ana Watershed Activities Waterwise Community Center X   X
Down by the River Roleplay Lesson Plan Children's Env. Literacy Foundation  X  
Wiki Watershed Toolkit Interactive Website Stroud Water Research Center X X X

Plant Adaptations (3rd Grade)

Exploring the Native Plant World Curriculum Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center   X X
Creature Features Lesson Plan Life Lab   X X
Structures and Behaviors Lesson Plan Beetles Project   X  

People and Plants (4th Grade)

Earth Mobile: The Chumash, Archeology and the Chaparral Environment
Curriculum LA Natural History Museum
Mapping Indigenous Los Angeles
Interactive Website UCLA
Native Partners: Plants and People of CA
Curriculum Rancho Santa Ana Botanical Garden

Groundwater Guardians (5th Grade)

Groundwater Detectives Lesson Plan Teach Engineering X   X
Groundwater Video Video KQED X    
Groundwater Activity Library Activity Guide Groundwater Foundation X   X

Capture that Rain (6th Grade)

Water Footprint Calculator Interactive Website   X   X
Nature Works: Water Activity Guide Nature Conservancy X   X