Investigating Storm Drains

Water ecoSTEM Kit Materials Used: Almatek Storm Drain Markers with Adhesive Pads and Safety Vests

ENGAGE - Students Observe This Phenomenon


GATHER Energy Investigations


graphic organizer summarizing the learning process of this activity

EXPLORE a Kit-Supported Learning Experience

Students will install aluminum storm drain makers on sidewalks or curbs above drain openings, using adhesive pads provided. These markers are intended to increase awareness that storm drains are separate from sewers, and anything swept into a storm drain empties into a river – and travels to an ocean - without being treated.


Students should be able to  create a labeled map or write a story about a contaminant that is swept into a storm drain near the school, following its journey to the nearest river where it is dumped untreated- and continues on to the ocean.


This explainer video shows how storm drains work. Students can learn more about watersheds by reviewing the  Know Your Watershed web site and by doing the Crumple a Watershed activity.


Students may create a door hanger infographic that explains their storm drain marking project and educates the public about why trash and waste liquids should never be disposed of in storm drains. (Note: Any students placing door hangers need adult supervision).



After making sense of a core idea by engaging in science or engineering practices through the lens of crosscutting concepts, students revise their original explanations of a phenomenon.


Students may propose solutions and choose a project, such as a schoolwide campaign to refuse single-use plastics. Students may wish to learn about the Ocean Heroes Program.