Project-Based Learning: Design and Build a Rain Garden

Lesson plan with video, grades 9–12

Video

Description

Stormwater runoff is one of the great urban challenges of our time. In cities that are covered with impervious surfaces—roofs, streets, and parking lots—stormwater flows rapidly over these surfaces, picking up pollutants and delivering them right into our water sources.

In a natural environment, stormwater gets absorbed into the ground where soil, rocks, and plant roots filter the water. A rain garden is designed to mimic this process by slowing the flow and absorbing stormwater before it hits our waterways.

This set of materials is designed to be used in conjunction with our Sustainable Urban Design Toolkit. If you have decided that a rain garden is the right project for your school, use these lessons to take your students from the design and engineering phase to installation. Use project-based learning to engage your students with nature by beautifying the school community and reducing stormwater impacts in your area. Become part of a network of schools across the country and create your own stormwater solution!

Downloads

Teacher Materials

  • Design and Build a Rain Garden Teacher's Guide
    PDF Word
  • Part 1 Rain Garden Proposal Lesson Plan
    PDF Word
  • Part 1 Stormwater PowerPoint
    PDF PPT
  • Part 2 Site Inventory and Base Map Creation Lesson Plan
    PDF Word
  • Part 3 Rain Garden Design and Planting Plan Lesson Plan
    PDF Word
  • Part 3 Rendering Examples PowerPoint
    PDF PPT
  • Part 4 Installation and Final Evaluation Lesson Plan
    PDF Word

Student Handouts

  • Part 1 Sustainable Cities Video
    PDF Word
  • Part 2A Rain Garden Site Inventory
    PDF Word
  • Part 2B Calculate Catchment Area Runoff and Determine Rain Garden Size
    PDF Word
  • Part 2C Draft the Base Map and Garden Layout
    PDF Word
  • Part 2 Calculate Slope
    PDF Word
  • Part 3 Rain Garden Final Design Guidelines
    PDF Word

Tags

rain garden, green infrastructure, urban, city, rain, sustainable urban design, stormwater, project-based learning

Published September 2017, updated November 2017