In The Community

Water is one of our most precious - and endangered - natural resources. That’s why we offer environmental education programs to show people, especially children, how their actions determine ecological quality. Using engaging hands-on activities and experiments, we teach some science and have some fun.

Teaching people about water science is one of our most important jobs for the future; it is one way we work with consumers to prevent pollution of our region’s drinking water. By preventing contamination of our drinking water, we both protect public health and avoid the cost of cleaning up the environment.

In the Classroom

We offer a wide variety of water science programs for school classes, scouts and other groups through the Whitney Water Center, an innovative environmental education center. Some programs are taught at the Water Center, located at 945 Whitney Avenue in Hamden, or you can invite the RWA into your classroom in-person to present hands-on water science education programs. All in-person programs are approximately one hour in length and the maximum class size for those programs is 30 students.

You can also borrow a Water Science Loan Box. These are self-contained teaching units. Each one of our Loan Boxes covers a unique topic and contains everything you need for learning about water in your classroom. Choose to do one activity as a supplement to your curriculum or do all of the activities and have a water-themed science week. Borrow a Loan Box and your students will learn science is fun!

Download the brochure.

Learning From Home Video Series

The RWA's Whitney Water Center is bringing the classroom to your home! Our water science educator developed the "Learning From Home" video lessons for elementary school children. These videos guide young learners through science experiments they can follow along with at home. The "In the Field" series takes students on virtual field trips and teaches them about the natural world, as well as some of the different plants and wildlife that can be found in our region. Follow the links below to access the videos.

Whitney Water Center Learning From Home

Whitney Water Center In the Field

Project W.A.T.E.R.

Project W.A.T.E.R. (Watershed, Aquatic, Terrestrial Ecosystem Research) is a program for sixth- through eighth-grade students. After learning about watersheds and water quality testing in the classroom, our educator will pick up your group at your school and transport your students on the Project W.A.T.E.R. bus to the Mill River watershed in Hamden. The group will make several stops along the river to check temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, and nitrate levels to assess human activities' impact on water quality. Afterward, our educator will help your students interpret the data they collected.

Registering for a School Program or Project W.A.T.E.R

Programs and Loan Boxes are FREE of charge for students from Ansonia, Beacon Falls, Bethany, Branford, Cheshire, Derby, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Killingworth, Madison, Milford, New Haven, North Branford, North Haven, Orange, Prospect, Regional District #16, Regional District #17, Seymour, West Haven, and Woodbridge. Groups from other areas are welcome on a space-available, fee basis.

For more information on our education programs or to register for a school program or Project W.A.T.E.R., contact Lisa DiFrancesco at 203-777-1142 or The following information will be needed to sign up for one of our education programs:

  • Teacher name
  • Contact name (if not the teacher)
  • School name
  • Complete school address and phone number
  • Date and time of program (please have an alternate)
  • Grade level
  • Number of students
  • Title of program
  • Any special needs of your students/chaperones

All programs are approximately one hour in length. Many classes cover a wide range of ages. Our staff will present an age-appropriate version of the program for your students. Maximum class size is 30 students.

To reserve a Loan Box, download the reservation form, fill it out and email it to the Whitney Water Center at Loan Boxes are available free of charge to schools and groups in the RWA’s district. The loan period is 10 school days, and the box will be delivered to and picked up from your school.