Thursday, January 4, 2018

5 Things to Learn About Groundwater with the Awesome Aquifer Kit

by Jennifer Wemhoff, The Groundwater Foundation

The Awesome Aquifer Kit is one of the most powerful and fun groundwater education tools in our arsenal - we just add water! The Kit's design lets users "see" groundwater in ways they can't in reality.

The Kit includes a step-by-step instruction guide, definitions and explanations, and materials to teach youth and adults alike about:

1. The connection between groundwater and surface water.
The kit's gravel is used to "build" an aquifer and a lake, and water is added to it to learn about terms like recharge, water table, saturated/unsaturated zones, surface water, and discharge.

2. Wells and how they work.
By using a hand pump and tubing, the kit teaches about well siting, pumping, drawdown, depletion, and safe yield. Kids (and adults!) love to pump their aquifers!

3. Porosity and permeability.
Experiments explain different materials' capacity to store water, and have water move through them.

4. How groundwater becomes contaminated and can be cleaned up.
This is perhaps one of the most eye-opening uses of the kit - to illustrate how a contamination reaches groundwater. Food coloring and water create a contaminant plume, and the well is "pumped" to show how the contaminant moves. Activated charcoal and coffee filters are then used to "clean" the contaminated water.

The Awesome Aquifer Kit can be used in a variety of education settings, from a classroom to a water festival and everything in between. Get your Kit today!

Video demonstration
Additional Groundwater Information

No comments: