Water Filtration Activity

via USDA Forest Service

This activity will show you how to use the scientific method to filter water.
*DO NOT drink any of the water in this experiment.*

Before you start this activity, come up with a statement of purpose and hypothesis.

  • Why is water filtration important?
  • What materials do you think will filter water the best? 

Supplies needed: Different size funnels, coffee filters or cheese cloth, sand, clean rocks, empty bottles, water with a little mud or dirt added.

  1. Set up your station with 3 cups/empty containers.
  2. Put a coffee filter inside of a funnel (try out which size works best) over each cup/empty container.
  3. Add sand to one, clean rocks to another and leave the last one empty.
  4. Try to filter the dirty water through each and discuss your findings.

Which one works the best? Did it match your hypothesis? Do you think plants would help filter it even more? What is the water cycle and which part of it is filtration related to?


Riparian Buffer – an area next to a waterway that has natural plant growth.
Hypothesis – an educated guess followed by a scientific experiment to test it out.
Water Cycle describes how the water on Earth is always changing forms (solid, liquid, gas) and moving between Earth’s layers.

McAuliffe-Shepard Blog

Send us your photos at info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org.

Activity is open to all ages and meets the needs or can be combined with other activities for the following Georgia Standards of Excellence: Science. Activity can also be used in conjunction with Georgia Project WET activities.

  • S3L2. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information about the effects of pollution (air, land, and water) and humans on the environment.
  • S4E3. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information to demonstrate the water cycle.
  • S6E3. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information to recognize the significant role of water in Earth processes.


Earth Month

We are calling on YOU to celebrate Earth Day with us the entire month of April! Come up with creative, fun and effective ways to better your environment and celebrate the Earth.

Here are some of the ways we are celebrating Earth Day :

  • Friday, April 8, you can find ORK at the Russell Union on GS Statesboro Campus as a part of Southern Sustainability week 
  • Saturday, April 16, ORK will be assisting with a private volunteer cleanup on the Vernon River with Asbury Memorial Church
  • Saturday, April 23, join our Earth Day community cleanup in the upper watershed
  • Monday, April 25, come join our public Don’t Litter Lotts Cleanup, in Statesboro
  • Saturday, April 30,  you can find us at Fire Festival at the Mary Kahrs Warnell Forest Education Center in Guyton
  • Saturday, April 30, we’ll be on the Canoochee River during our first members-only event of the year, alongside guides from Ft. Stewart, we’ll explore the Canoochee from kayaks and canoes.

If you visit us at any of these events, or celebrate Earth Month in some other way, send your photos to info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org or tag us on social media by April 30.

Water, I Love You

We all know that water equals life, so of course we love water! Put on your creativity cap and tell us *why* you love water. Think outside the traditional Valentine’s celebrations. Use any platform, mixed media or words and share that love this year for Valentine’s Day and the month of February.

Activity is open to all ages. Share why you love water and what it means to you at info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org or on social media using #LoveORK.

Extra ways to show you love water

Check out these sites for a few suggestions for how to dispose of batteries, e-waste or items that can be repurposed to see how they can be disposed of properly instead of ending up in the landfill or making their way into our waterways.



Goodwill is currently accepting electronics recycling, free of charge! Old wires,  electronics, kids toys, etc. can be donated as e-waste. Verify with your local Goodwill prior to drop off.


Did you know that you can recycle textiles at appropriate clothing & shoe drop-off bins? Fabrics, especially those connected to ‘fast fashion,’ are one of the fastest growing materials in landfills, but they don’t need to be. They can be repurposed into other textile materials such as carpet, clothing, blankets, and more.

Guide to recycling textiles in Georgia


Recycling or properly disposing of batteries can be confusing. Batteries are recycled in different ways depending on the type. If storing old batteries until they can be recycled, always be separate them by type and tape the ends to help slow the corrosion process. Call2Recycle offers mail-in options as well as a list of places that accept drop-offs.

Forest Ecology

Pinus longifolia. Public domain. Aylmer Bourke Lambert. 1803.


Adaptation – How a species changes over time to help it survive in its environment
Canopy – Tallest trees in a forest; also includes animals living in that level
Decomposition – The breakdown process of organic matter through decay, rotting, animal feces
Ecology – The study of relationships between organisms and their environment
Habitat – The environment in which a species typically lives and eats
Pioneer Species – The first species to enter a new habitat
Succession – Change in different species and their community over time
Symbiosis – A biological relationship between two species
Understory – Trees and plants that live below the main canopy level of a forest

Bald cypress samples


Go outside and find a tree in your backyard, school playground, community park, etc. Once you pick your tree, look at the different characteristics (leaf shape, size, color; bark; height, trunk width; etc.) and identify your tree. 

Once you identify your tree, take note of its habitat. Does it like shade or sun? Does it grow near the water? Is it the tallest tree around or is it in the understory? Do you notice any animals or insects on, or around, your tree? Write down as many details about your tree’s habitat as you can. Take some photos or make a drawing / painting / collage of your tree. 

Bald cypress botanical drawing. Louisiana Digital Library.

Next, do some research (computer or library) to find out more about your tree. Write a short story about your tree and include everything you saw and read about it. Include a picture of your tree or your artistic representation and send it to us: info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org

One submission will be chosen to be featured on our social media!

If you need help with identifying your tree for this activity:

Arbor Day tree identification | LeafSnap App

or email a photo of your tree or leaf to melanie@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org

Activity can be done in combination with Project Learning Tree activity “We All Need Trees,” which can be adapted for PreK-6 grade in Science, Visual Arts & Language Arts.

Activity is open to all ages and was adapted from Rock Eagle 4-H Center Education Program Curriculum. It meets the needs or can be combined with other activities for the following Georgia Standards of Excellence in Science.

  • S3L1. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information about the similarities and differences between plants, animals, and habitats found within geographic regions (Blue Ridge Mountains, Piedmont, Coastal Plains, Valley and Ridge, and Appalachian Plateau) of Georgia.
  • S4L1. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information about the roles of organisms and the flow of energy within an ecosystem.
  • SBO1. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information to analyze the nature of the relationships between plant morphological structures and anatomical structures, functions, and processes.
  • SBO2. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information to delineate the plant divisions based on current plant phylogenetic and taxonomic principles.