August 2018
Youth Matters

PALS: Pike County Water Festival

Learning How to Keep Our Waterways Clean


Every spring, fourth-graders throughout the state look forward to attending their county’s water festival. The Pike County Water Festival has invited PALS to attend for the past several years to do a quick presentation to the students about littering as it pertains to water.

This year, Janet Gaston, of Troy University, asked PALS to incorporate littering as a larger component of the festival, complete with experiments and a short lecture portion.

I jumped at the chance to make littering a higher priority and came up with some experiments that would create hands-on scenarios for the students.


The first experiment showed the students how litter travels in water. One student got to be the litter bug and throw trash into a piece of gutter we used to create our "ditch." Another student poured water into the ditch so they could see how the litter travels and gathers when it rains.

Our second experiment focused on water pollution. The students added water color to a cup of water and poured it into other cups of clean water to see how the pollution travels with the water as it moves from ditches to streams to lakes, etc.

These experiments really helped create a visual for the students that I hope will make them really think next time they consider littering.

The fourth-graders of Pike County are now armed and ready to help spread the anti-litter message.


One of the most wonderful things about the Clean Campus Program is that it is FREE to all Alabama public and private schools thanks to ALFA and Alabama Farmers Cooperative.

If your local school would like to schedule a presentation, contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 334-224-7594. Schools can also sign up for the Clean Campus Program online at


Jamie Mitchell is the PALS State Clean Campus Coordinator.