This list supports the teaching of science through the topic of Rivers.  Providing ideas and resources which link primary science objectives to Rivers, and covering some of the objectives from  properties and changes of materials, evolution and inheritance, living things and their habitats, electricity and forces' as well as countless opportunities to cover working scientifically.  

Visit the primary resources for cross curricular topics webpage to access all resource lists:



Links and Resources

Water for Industry

Many children don't know that rusting is an irreversible change.  Activity 1 is great way of exploring the process of rusting, learning about the properties of materials, as well as reversible and irreversible changes.  

The activity involves some significant preparation of materials in advance, so it might be best done as a whole-class investigation or demonstration, unless you can involves some willing adult volunteers in the preparation of materials!  

Activity 3 focuses on filtration, allowing for exploration of separating solids and liquids.  This activity is much easier to set up so that each group can partake.  You could even extend the activity by filtering water sufficiently to allow it to be drinkable.  Remember that you should always boil water that has been filtered before drinking it, as well as risk assessing the activity thoroughly in advance.  



publication year
1990 - 1999

5 files



Effects of Climate Change - Images

These images from Practical Action provide a great starting point for discussion about flooding and what can be done to prevent flooding.  

Children could use these images as a context for designing and making a raft or flood defence.  This could provide an opportunity to investigate properties of materials.  

Children could also investigate what types of crops grow in flood plains.  

publication year
2000 - 2009

1 file



Forces: may the forces be with you

Making a paper boat allows children to learn about water resistance.  Children often have the misconception that heavier things will sink and lighter objects will float.  This activity allows children to explore making a boat in different ways and begin to understand that it is the shape of an object which determines whether or not it will float.  

Although linked to the river topic, it would be safer to test paper boats in school in a sink or paddling pool.  

This activity could be combined with a visit to a river or harbour to look at the different boats and their features.  

publication year
2010 to 2019

12 files



Published by

STEM Learning's picture
STEM Learning


Share this resource