My Water, My Watershed

My Water, My Watershed ~ An Exploration into the Santa Fe Watershed

To reserve a spot for the 2015/2016 school year, please contact Janie at  (505) 820-1696 or

 My Water, My Watershed is an experiential, science-based program for fourth and fifth grade Santa Fe Public School students to study and explore their watershed, learning about the complex relationships between living things and their environment. During a one hour pre-visit in the classroom, students will be introduced to a short history of the Santa Fe River and learn the definition of a watershed.

The full day field trip will occur in the upper watershed of the Santa Fe River, an area that has been closed to the public since 1932. We have been granted unique access to explore this area with your students and to see first-hand where our water comes from. During the field visit, students will use their observation, questioning and data collection skills to explore this rich environment.

In the one hour post-visit, students will review and evaluate the data collected and reflect upon the new concepts learned. Exploring ideas for water conservation,students will revisit the connections between the watershed, Santa Fe River, Rio Grande River, and the water we use in our schools, homes, and community.

     My Water, My Watershed is FREE for all fourth and fifth grade SFPS classes, but space is limited. SIGN UP EARLY TO ENSURE YOUR SPACE.

Day One:  One hour pre-visit to classroom. Define a watershed and map out the Santa Fe River and its watershed. Prepare for field trip.

Day Two:  Full school day field trip to upper watershed to practice exploration, observation, and data collection. Sampling of aquatic macroinvertebrates in the Santa Fe River using a dichotomous key and wildlife observation.

Day Three:  One hour post-visit to classroom. Review field program findings and evaluation activity. Explore ideas for water conservation and revisit where we get our water from.

This program is funded by the City of Santa Fe.

To sign up or if you have questions, please contact Raquel at or call (505) 820-1696.

Standards Alignment for My Water, My Watershed

Fourth Grade

Strand I – Scientific Thinking and Practice

Benchmark I – Use scientific methods to observe, collect, record, analyze, predict, interpret, and determine reasonableness of data.

1. Use instruments to perform investigations (e.g., timers, balances) and communicate findings.

2. Differentiate observation from interpretation and understand that a scientific explanation comes in part from what is observed and in part from how observation is interpreted.

Bechmark II – Use scientific thinking and knowledge and communicate findings.

1. Communicate ideas and present findings about scientific investigations that are open to critique from others.

Strand II – Life Sciences

Benchmark I – Know that living things have diverse forms, structures, functions, and habitats.

1. Explain that different living organisms have distinctive structures and body systems that serve specific functions (e.g., walking, flying, swimming.)

4. Describe the components of and relationships among organisms in a food chain (e.g., plants are the primary source of energy for living systems.)

Fifth Grade

Strand I – Scientific Thinking and Practice

Benchmark I – Use scientific methods to develop questions, design and conduct experiments using appropriate technologies, analyze and evaluate results, make predictions, and communicate findings.

1. Plan and conduct investigations, including formulating testable questions, making systematic observations, developing logical conclusions, and communicating findings.

2. Use appropriate technologies to perform scientific tests, collect and display data.

3. Use graphic representations to present data and produce explanations for investigations.

Strand II – Life Sciences

Benchmark I – Explain the diverse structures and functions of living things and the complex relationships between living things and their environments.

1. Identify the components of habitats and ecosystems (producers, consumers, decomposers, predators).

2. Understand how food webs depict relationships between different organisms.

3. Know that changes in the environment can have different effects on different organisms (e.g., some organisms move, some survive, some reproduce, some die).

4. Describe how human activity impacts the environment.

Benchmark II – Describe the structure of Earth and its atmosphere and explain how energy, matter, and forces shape Earth’s systems.

1. Understand that water and air relate to Earth’s processes, including: how the water cycle relates to weather and how clouds are made of tiny droplets of water, like fog or steam.

3. Know that most of Earth’s surface is covered by water, that most of that water is salt water in oceans, and that fresh water is found in rivers, lakes, underground sources, and glaciers.

Strand III – Science and Society

Benchmark I – Explain how scientific discoveries and inventions have changed individuals and societies.

1. Describe the contributions of science to understanding local or current issues (e.g., watershed and community decisions regarding water use.)