Groundwater/Aquifer Lessons

GROUNDWATER/AQUIFER LESSONS: In conjunction with the Missoula Water Quality District, WEN helps students explore the connection between groundwater, surface water, drinking water and our local creeks, streams and rivers.

WHY WEN TEACHES ABOUT GROUNDWATER/AQUIFERS: Students gain an appreciation for where their drinking water comes from. In this lesson, students explore where groundwater comes from and its relationship to Missoula’s aquifer. Furthermore, students learn how contaminants travel through an aquifer, what different checks are put into place to monitor groundwater quality, and why it is important to monitor streams and rivers in the Missoula area.

HOW WEN TEACHES ABOUT GROUNDWATER/AQUIFERS: Our class presentations include hands-on activities helping students explore the difference between surface and groundwater.  We let the students build their own aquifer models to observe how water moves through different substrates, demonstrate surface runoff using an Envision groundwater flow model, and show how contaminants and water can move through Missoula’s aquifer using groundwater flow models donated by Missoula Water Quality District and Mountain Water Company.

ADDITIONAL CHOICES FOR TEACHERS: We also bring our lessons into the field, monitoring well data at a few sites around Western Montana (with plans to expand!) in conjunction with our School Stream Monitoring field trips.


Want to schedule a class visit or field trip? Want to volunteer? You have questions, we have answers; contact our Program Coordinator, Rebecca Paquette at or call (406) 541-9287.