Clean Water for Wildlife - our practical science lesson

The kiddies enjoy their science lessons so much more when they have a hands on activity rather than reading through a text book or watching an experiment online. To make each lesson as practical as possible I research any related experiments most of which can be carried out in your own kitchen.

I heard about the Clean Water for Wildlife citizen survey and thought it would be a great way for the kiddies to get involved by identifying clean water for habitats whilst raising awareness about nutrient pollution. Anyone can take part, so we ordered three kits in order to test various water bodies within our local area. This activity could be used as part of the John Muir Award too!

The kits come with a set of clear instructions as well as sheets in which to record the results.

DD13 and DS11 began by identifying the body of water they wanted to test. We decided to go back to a stream we helped clear as part of our John Muir Award conservation as well as the lake nearby in our local park. The final kit will be used in a pond in the nearby woods.

They then took water samples from the stream and measured the amount of Nitrate and Phosphate, this was very simple to do as each tube is clearly labelled and contains the powder. They squeezed out the air and immersed in the water to take the sample. Remember to take a sample of water using a tub and then immerse the tube within the tub so you don't affect the wildlife there!!


After shaking the tube gently they took a note of the time and waited for the colour reaction.

The tubes were then compared with the colour chart and the results were noted. They were quite surprised with the results as they predicted the levels of Nitrate and Phosphate would be much higher!

We will now be finding a grid reference for our area using the website for help before submitting our results.

'Sadly, it only takes a little pollution to damage habitats like streams and ponds, and to harm the most sensitive plants and animals that call these places home. When ‘clean water’ is lost, we risk losing this variety and richness of life.
With your help, the Clean Water for Wildlife survey aims to find the hidden gems – places which are free from pollution and where wildlife still thrives. The survey also aims to discover for the first time, the true extent of nutrient pollution facing freshwater wildlife today.'

To get involved and order your kits see the Clean Water for Wildlife website:


  1. We're really pleased to hear you enjoyed taking part in the survey, and found it a valuablke activity. Thank you for your contribution!


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