We all need clean water. We need it in our homes to drink and clean with. Animals and plants in the environment also need clean water. The threats to clean water today, come from all of our yards and streets. As it rains, these pollutants wash into storm drains and into your nearest waterbody. In this activity, you’ll learn to spot some common sources of pollution that come from our own homes and neighborhoods. Give it a try!

Activity Overview

In this activity, you’ll examine in the image on the worksheet. Find and circle the images of pollution you see near the home in the picture. In the second (optional) part of the activity, you can go outside and look for those same sources of pollution in your yard, or on a walk in your neighborhood. You can tally what you see. Finally, you can take action to prevent pollution by telling your neighbors that your storm drain connects to the river, and by cleaning up pollution at home.


​Your home is connected to the San Lorenzo River. Rain or running water travels from your yard or driveway, down your street to the nearest storm drain. On the way, it picks up anything in its path, including trash and pollution. When it enters the storm drain, the water moves through underground pipes and empties into the river. You can keep your river clean by finding pollution and stopping it before it goes down your storm drain.

Materials Needed:

  • PDF worksheet (Click button below to download, or read online)
  • Pencil, pen, marker or crayon


  1. Download and print the worksheet.
  2. Examine the image on the page and circle the pollutants you see.
  3. Take a walk around your neighborhood. Look for any storm drains and tally any pollutants you see.
  4. Think about ways you can stop pollution before it gets to the river.

Thank you to New Leaf Community Markets and artist Gill Seaman for your support in creating these activities for CWC’s Watershed Rangers Activity Book.

To all of the Watershed Rangers students, teachers and program partners, although we will not be able to see you in classrooms, field trips and after school programs right now, we hope to provide you and your loved ones with online resources and activities during this time. We know that parents, teacher and lifelong learners are seeking ways to stay engaged and active, and we’re going to be working to bring activities to you through the Coastal Watershed Council blog. Please share these resources and activities with friends, neighbors and parents groups and stay tuned for more.

Additional resources:

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