River Catcher

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Source Institutions

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In this activity (located at the top of the page), learners make an easy river strainer and see what they can catch. Learners will observe that flowing water in a river, creek, or stream carries plants, animals, seeds, and other things including garbage with the current. Use this activity to encourage inquiry, practice sorting living and non-living things and introduce the effects of pollution on the environment. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on Archive.org.]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
1 to 2 hours

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 4 - 11

Resource Types:
Activity, Field Trip


Materials List (per student)

  • Wire coat hanger or piece of strong wire
  • Screen or mesh
  • Duct tape
  • Work or garden gloves


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Structure
      • Oceans and Water
  • Life Sciences
    • Diversity of Life
      • Plants
      • Animals
      • Classification
    • Ecology
      • Ecosystems
      • Human Impact
  • Mathematics
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Analysis
      • Data Collection
  • Physical Sciences
    • Motion and Forces
    • Vibration and Waves
      • Wave Motion
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • About Inquiry
      • Asking Questions
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Animals
  • Nature and Environment
  • Outdoor Activity
  • Physical Activity


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • be mobile
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • Association of Zoos and Aquariums


  • All rights reserved, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park, 2011