Water quality

Person pouring water from a jug into a glass for a small boy

Class-based lesson and field trip for pupils in years 5 to 8.

Book a lesson or use our DIY Freshwater Detectives™ kit to run your own water quality lesson.


Depending on the duration of the class, your pupils will have the opportunity to learn about:

  • the water cycle
  • how streams become polluted
  • how to identify freshwater bugs (macroinvertebrate)

Your pupils will also have the opportunity to practise testing the turbidity, pH and nitrate levels in water samples.


During the field trip your pupils will have the chance to put theory to the test. They will measure and record the turbidity, pH and nitrate levels of their local waterway and identify the bugs living there. Once they return to the classroom, they can examine their results and make an assessment on the quality of the water in their waterway.

Use the Freshwater Detectives™ kit to run your own water quality lesson

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The kit allows teachers to prepare students for a freshwater sampling field trip in their local area.

The first of two short videos will guide the teacher with the aid of the classroom kit through:

  • How streams become polluted
  • Which bugs (macroinvertebrates) can be found in streams, what they look like and what their presence can tell you about the quality of the water
  • How to test for turbidity, pH, nitrate and oxygen
  • How to make a water scoop

The second video will show teachers and students alike what to do on the field trip, how to test water and how to interpret the results using the results poster and explanation sheets.

The programme is flexible. It can be run over a single day or over a whole term divided into nine weekly sessions

We have designed the kit for New Zealand schools and it is related to levels 2-4 of the science curriculum.

To order your kit for term one 2019 please send your name and details to Communications@water.co.nz

Your kit will be available for collection from our head office, level 3, 73 Remuera Road, Newmarket from 28 January 2019, or you can arrange for a courier to deliver it to your school. 

Each kit costs $300 including GST, which includes the classroom kit, field trip kit and posters and can be used with one or two classes.

Details of where to buy replacement items are inside the lid of the boxes so these kits can be managed by schools after purchase.


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You may also like to download the following resources:

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