The rain water collection project

BY Kimberly McArdle

Cape Cod Collaborative (Bourne)


Goals, objectives, and activities

This project has three main goals. The first, to aid the students in providing clean, healthy vegetables for the school cafeteria. The second goal, to learn about the importance of renewable resources such as rainwater collection. Lastly, the students will learn about water pollution and it’s effects on the environment. This project will aid in expanding our ability to provide hands on learning for our students. We currently have several garden beds available for growing fresh food. Our issue is we are located on Joint Base Cape Cod (JBCC). JBCC is located over the sole source aquifer that provides drinking water for the residents of Cape Cod. Parts of the aquifer have been contaminated by fuel spills and other past activities at JBCC.  Our school water is polluted and we can only use bottled water. This rainwater collection system will provide a direct solution to the clean water issues in the vegetable garden. The students will use recycled plastic barrels, existing gutters, down spouts, and gravity to create a Eco-friendly irrigation system. This project will provide endless opportunities beyond its initial  phase of building. Helping illustrate  that you don’t have to be part of the original problem, to be part of the solution.


How will the project be evaluated (e.g. how will you gauge its success)

This project will serve as an opportunity for the students to generalize the skills they have been learning, in the classroom, in a hands-on manner. Social skill, math ,science, and social studies will be incorporated to help the students reach the overall goal of creating a functional eco-friendly irrigation system. After the initial phase and construction of the system the students will continue to measure and track data on the rainfall amounts, maintain the system and educate upcoming students on the processes involved in creating the system through a presentation at our science fair. The project will meet state standards as well as help to accomplish each students Individual educational performance goals as we are an alternative special education school.




Benefit to the students and the school

This project will provide countless benefits to our school. Providing not only healthy food, but the opportunity to be part of the creation of the food.  Experiencing every phase of the process from seed to table. Providing a sound understanding of how the environment can affect the quality of the food being grown. This can further help the students understand the more global effects of environmental pollution on societies and be part of the solutions that are available.

Budget (Please detail how funding will be used. Itemize as appropriate.)


6 Barrels @ $25 each $150.00

3 x 2-Barrel RainKit™ includes downspout diverter, inlet hose, inlet screen, vent pieces, barrel caps & adapters, connection fittings, spigot outlet, and non-potable labeling. $240.09

Glues, Sealants, and Instructional Materials for 6 Barrels    $25.05

Total for Tools & Add-Ons $82.34

Total Cost: $497.48

Timeline of Project (when will you do the project, if applicable.)

This project would start as soon as weather permits us to get outside as we would like to start planting the garden beds in the spring.