GUELPH/ERAMOSA – Thousands of students will gather on the island at Guelph Lake Conservation Area in June to learn about groundwater.
There will be more than 50 hands-on activity centres teaching kids from Grades 2 to 5 about groundwater conservation, treatment, management, and protection during the annual Waterloo Wellington Children’s Groundwater Festival (WWCGF).
Executive director Beatriz Gomez said the content ranges from understanding the water cycle to learning “what’s involved in maintaining a well to protect groundwater.”
Students from Wellington County, Guelph and Waterloo Region will compare how water is used now with how it was used in the past, and also explore issues like the global water crisis and climate change, Gomez said.
The week-long festival offers a hands-on approach to teaching the water curriculum, traditionally involving about 5,000 students and more than 500 volunteers.
Organizers are hoping more schools will attend this year.
Gomez said it is important to understand the significance of water conservation and the challenges with collecting, treating and transporting water.
This is the first year the festival is happening at Guelph Lake, where being surrounded by water will help “bring the message out to the kids,” Gomez said.
The festival has taken place since 1996 at the Ken Seiling Waterloo Region Museum in Kitchener.
Gomez is excited for the in-person festival this year, but is also happy officials were able to provide the festival virtually in 2021 and 2022.
This year it will be a hybrid model, with one day of virtual festival on June 13.
The in-person festival is from June 6 to 9. Admission is $12 per child, including busing.
Space is limited and will be handled on a first-come, first served basis. Home school families are also welcome to sign up.
Further details and registration information is available at www.wwcgf.com.