Follow the Water 2019

School Programs to Know and Benefit the Watershed

DESCRIPTION AND TERMS – How to bring Follow the Water to your school

Follow the Water @ Canterbury Woods Elementary

"Dear Friends of Long Branch & Accotink Creek, Thank you for helping us learn new things about our watershed. It was really fun finding invertebrates. It was also fun learning about the animals and plants around us. Also learning how our actions affect the watershed. I sure learned a lot when we were together!"         See all the thank you notes here

May 28, 2019
Thanks to everyone who helped out May 28th with the "Follow the Water" program at Canterbury Woods Elementary! We just got this super-sweet thank-you note and drawing, which features a pretty well-detailed depiction of our stream monitoring expert's well-organized operation, and a beautiful stream and forest, and a worm and a bee and some hearts. And someone picking up trash.

Thanks to Stormwater Planning Division and Friends of Long Branch for their much-appreciated help, and to Canterbury Woods Elementary for welcoming us, and working with us to bring the program in. School support is essential for these kinds of programs, and this really helped create a great learning environment!

"Follow the Water" allows us to take the time to go deep on the topic - 2 hours, starting with a classroom presentation, then a campus stormwater survey, a watershed walk along the stream, and stream monitoring.

During our program we were able to "Follow the Water" from the school down to Long Branch, learning about nature & human impacts along the way. The students were very interested and enthusiastic. By the time we got outside the students are spotting stormwater drains and picking up trash, and telling stories about the fox they saw in the woods and so on...

Follow the Water @ Fairhill Elementary

April 30, 2019
Fairfax County’s Stormwater Management Program helped Fairhill Elementary School fifth-grade students, their teachers, and administrators transform a dusty and downtrodden area of bare dirt around a storm drain into a budding native garden. Friends of Accotink Creek’s Follow the Water was onsite educating students on the importance of soils and exploring the life that healthy soil supports.

Six hundred native plants were installed near the school’s playground. The hands-on learning event was provided by Revitalize, Restore, Replant! (R3), a County program in which students learn how native plants with long roots improve water quality by soaking up excess nutrients and hold soil in place better than turf grass.

During recess many younger students gathered ‘round and expressed their excitement for this new space. Many were extending the hands, asking to be watered along with the plants.

Plantings surrounding storm drains like this are done in the form of a “pizza garden”, with species separated into wedge-shaped slices for easier identification and weeding.