Rain Gardens: Climate Connections

INTRODUCTION:

Scientists project that in Philadelphia it's very likely that the number of heavy downpours will increase due to climate change.


Ask students what they think the words "rain garden " mean. Have them write a definition. Explain that a rain garden is a bowl shaped garden that allows rainwater runoff from non porous surfaces to opportunity to be absorbed. This reduces runoff, allowing storm water to soak into the ground.

Ask students if they have every seen a parking lot in a heavy rainstorm. Have them describe what it looks like. If it is difficult to elicit a response to this question, show a short video clip of a parking lot in a rainstorm. Or you could show pictures from of a parking lot in a rainstorm. Your goal is to have students understand that we are trying to manage storm water and prepare for the effects of climate change. Here is a suggestion of a video to show.

ACTIVITY: Make a Rain Garden

RESOURCES:

Three Rivers Rain Garden Alliance website, with how to guides and explanations: http://raingardenalliance.org/

More information can be found on Stormwater PA: http://www.stormwaterpa.org/raingarden