Bilingual Educational Materials

Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin

Are you an educator looking to engage your English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) students in real-world investigations of their waterways, natural resources, and watersheds?

ICPRB offers bilingual educational materials in English and Spanish that may be used “as is” or adapted to fit your students’ needs. Click on each program title to see program descriptions and lesson plans. As this is the first edition of our bilingual lessons, we welcome your thoughts on their usefulness and possible improvements.

Score Four: Students, Schools, Streams, and the Bay

ICPRB’S Score Four: Students, Schools, Streams, and the Bay Program culminates with Student Stormwater Action Projects to reduce water pollution. But before students turn one shovel of dirt, they conduct a series of investigations of their school’s watershed and campus. Students assess permeability, stormwater dynamics, pollution sources, and soils. Using their findings, they plan and implement a Student Stormwater Action Project. Projects can be conservation landscapes, rain barrels, tree plantings, rain gardens, and more. Best for grades 9-12; can be adapted for middle school.

Lesson Plans

We recommend using lessons from each of the following categories sequentially. Most lessons involve a presentation and student inquiry or activity. For more information, refer to the Score Four Lesson Framework. Lessons in English can be found here.

The inquiries can be downloaded individually or as complete sets:
Complete Student Bilingual Notebook | Combined Teacher and Student Bilingual Notebook

A. Exploring Your Watershed

20151124_124525-3Students learn about their local waters, pollution sources, and solutions for stormwater pollution.

  • Background Presentation: Watersheds, Land Use, and Sustainable Practices
  • FieldScope Map Inquiry
    Presentation (Spanish PDF PowerPoint | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint)
    Teacher | Student Handout (not available in Spanish)
  • Topography, Land Use and Stormwater Chemistry
    Teacher | Collecting Stormwater Samples
    Stormwater Chemistry: Student Handout (English)
    Topography: Student Handout (not available in Spanish)
B. Assessing Your Campus

Students discover how their school campus contributes to stormwater pollution.

C. Planning Your Project

Picking PlantsStudents investigate factors that affect the growth of plants and trees; set goals for their Stormwater Action Project; pick their site; design a project; and start planting.

  • Planning Your Project (Teacher)
  • Conservation Landscapes and Picking the Project Goals
    Presentation (Spanish PDF  PowerPoint | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint)
    Student Handout (Spanish | Bilingual)
  • Site Selection
    Student Handout (Spanish | Bilingual)
  • Sun/Shade Observation
    Student Handout (Spanish | Bilingual)
  • Site Conditions and Project Characteristics
    Student Handout (Spanish | Bilingual)
  • Plant Selection and Garden Design
    • Native Plants and Plant Selection (Spanish PDF PowerPoint | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint)
    • Garden Design (Spanish TBA | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint)
    • Plant Selection and Garden Design Student Handout (not available in Spanish)
    • Planning Color for the Seasons Student Handout (Spanish | Bilingual)
  • Installing Your Conservation Landscape
    Presentation (not available in Spanish)
D. Maintaining Your Project

Students PlantingStudents plan and create a maintenance schedule to ensure the project continues to meet the class goals for years to come.


Water Ways: Stream Ecology and Monitoring

ICPRB’s Water Ways program helps teachers (middle through high school classes) start stream ecology or monitoring programs. The program includes presentations, hands-on activities, and resources. The presentations can be done as a series or as stand-alone lessons. Lessons in English can be found here.

Overview: Introducing Stream Monitoring

This presentation can be used to introduce stream ecology and stream monitoring to students.

Water Chemistry
Biomonitoring with Benthic Macroinvertebrates

Kindergarten-Middle School Teacher Resources

  • The Cacapon Institute – The Potomac Highland Watershed School provides a game-like approach to learning about benthic macroinvertebrate identification and collection.
  • Audubon Naturalist Society – Green Kids provides complete lesson plans and PowerPoints for grades 4-5, covering stream habitat, monitoring procedures, and equipment.
  • Izaac Walton League of America – The Creek Freaks Program provides comprehensive teacher and student guides for extensive hands-on inquiries of stream ecosystems for grades 5-8.

High School Teachers

  • Explore and Restore Maryland Streams, Maryland Department of Natural Resources Biological Assessment of Stream Health.
  • Forms for doing biological and other surveys:
  • Maryland Streamwaders Macroinvertebrates by Tolerance Levels, KEY
  • Maryland Stream Health Map – view data collected on a stream near your school, using interactive maps and charts of the results
  • Resource Guides:
    • A Guide To Common Freshwater Invertebrates of North America, J. Reese Voshell, Jr. – Covers life habits and basic anatomy, color illustrations.
    • Guide to Aquatic Insects & Crustaceans, Izaac Walton League of America – includes dichotomous key, descriptions of functional groups (feeding methods of different benthic macroinvertebrates)

Watershed Connections

ICPRB’s Watershed Connections program links the connections between watersheds, land use, and water quality, while using a hand built watershed model that students can use to investigate historical land use, water pollution, and the use of best management practices to reduce stormwater runoff. Lessons in English can be found here.

Build Your Own Watershed Connections Model
Watershed Connections PresentationWatershed Model
  • Part 1: Maryland Waterways and Watersheds
    (Spanish PDF PowerPoint | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint)
  • Part 2: Land Use- How Infiltration, Runoff, and Water Quality Differ in Different Landscapes
    (Spanish PDF PowerPoint | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint)
  • Part 3: Best Management Practices and Stormwater Solutions
    (Spanish PDF PowerPoint | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint)
  • Alternate Presentation
    (Created by ESOL teacher Kari Rowe, ideal for beginner English learners or lower grade levels)
    (Spanish PDF PowerPoint | Bilingual PDF PowerPoint
Watershed Model Activities