Durham Children's Watershed Festival

With over 35 curriculum connected learning centres, grade four students enjoy a day of fun, hands-on learning that helps increase their awareness about the importance of water conservation and the ecology of their watershed. 


Monday, September 27 to

Friday, October 1, 2021 

NOTICE: Due to COVID-19, the 2020 Festival has been modified and is now available as an online and virtual program. For more information and access to the program, please contact ystorm@cloca.com


$11.50 / student

(bussing fees are covered by Festival Sponsors)


Teaching staff and adult volunteers are free.

Payment can be brought on the day of the Festival.



Payment and schedule arranged by Festival Coordinator.


Bus company contact information will be provided. 

Grade four classes from the four participating school boards will be booked for a day at the Festival on a first come, first serve basis.


How We Do It

A large effort is made every year towards Festival sponsorship to help keep costs down for students. Festival activities are also frequently updated so they continue to meet curriculum standards, teacher’s needs, and are inclusive for people of all abilities. The only thing we don’t do is arrange the weather!

In order to carry out these messages successfully, a committee was established in 1998 with Central Lake Ontario Conservation (CLOCA) being the lead organization. Currently the community partners on the committee include representatives from:

  • Central Lake Ontario Conservation
  • Durham Catholic District School Board
  • Durham District School Board
  • Friends of Second Marsh
  • Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
  • Ontario Power Generation (Darlington Nuclear)
  • Region of Durham (Health Department & Works Department)
  • Scouts Canada (Camp Samac)

Our Philosophy

The Durham Children’s Watershed Festival promotes the awareness that water is the basis for all life and shows how water plays an essential role in the social and economic development of Ontario. Communities, like ours, depend on water resources to support the growth of commerce, industry and transportation. The Festival motivates students to become water stewards in their classroom and community by combining hands-on, interactive activities with messages relevant to their daily lives. Throughout their day at the Festival, students soak-up knowledge on the properties, uses, connections and importance of water and habitat. With this information, students become more aware of the value of conserving and protecting water. Interaction with industry professionals, water experts and enthusiastic educators highlight the environmental education programming of the Festival.

About Us

Launched as part of Central Lake Ontario Conservation's (CLOCA) 40th anniversary theme of “Water Quality” in 1998, the goal of the Durham Children's Watershed Festival is to increase the awareness of grade four students concerning water issues and motivate them to become water stewards in their home, classroom and community. The Festival is held at Camp Samac in Oshawa and consists of 35 hands-on, curriculum connected, interactive activities with messages relevant to the student’s daily lives. Through the activity centres, students will discover the importance of water in their lives and how their actions affect the watershed in which they live. The objective is for students to enjoy themselves while learning about important water issues. Every year, approximately 4,200 students visit the Festival.



June 11

Registration Deadline

September 10

Cancellation Deadline

($75 fee after deadline)

September 17

Confirmation Deadline



Ticks are present in the natural environment and the Blacklegged (Deer) Tick has the potential to carry and transmit Lyme Disease.  It is important to be aware so you and your students know how to properly protect yourselves from ticks, check for ticks, and remove and collect ticks.  Please see the Durham Region Health Department's website for more information.


Teacher's Guide

Quick Reference Checklist

Festival Map*

Volunteer Info Sheet & Map* 

print for each adult volunteer


Watershed Activities List*

description of activity centres

Festival Planner*

activity selection guide

Lunchtime Activity 

scavenger hunt



Ticks & Lyme Disease

Tick Hiding Spots




No parking is available at the Festival for personal vehicles.

Structure of a Festival Day

Times Activity Centres: 9:30-11:45am Lunch: 11:45-12:15 Activity Centres: 12:15-1:20pm Grade 4 students should be organized in advance of the Festival into groups of 5-8 accompanied by one taecher or one adult chaperone. The Festival runs rain or shine. Check the weather report and dress appropriately (comfortable waterproof footwear is a good idea!). Lunches are to be litterless and backpacks must be carried throughout the day. Please bring refillable water bottles. Before you come, you may plan ahead and select activities and exhibits that best suit your students’ needs. To assist in this process, please use the Watershed Activities List along with the Festival Planner (see "Materials for Your Trip").

Adult / Parent Chaperones

Adult chaperones arrive with the bus as no parking is available at the Festival. Grade 4 students should be organized in advance of the Festival into groups of 5-8 students accompanied by one teacher or one adult chaperone. Adults must bring a litterless, nut-free lunch as they are not permitted to leave the Festival until the end of the day.

Curriculum Expectation

All learning centres have been designed to complement the Ontario Science & Technology Curriculum Expectations for Grade 4 Students. One of the learning goals is that students have the knowledge to say “I can use water wisely!” Curriculum Expectations that are met at the Festival Include: Life Systems Demonstrate an understanding of the concepts of habitat and community, and identify the factors that could affect habitats and communities of plants and animals. Describe ways in which humans can change habitats and the effects of these changes on the plants and animals within the habitats. Investigate the dependency of plants and animals on their habitat and the interrelationships of the plants and animals living in a specific habitat. Earth & Space Systems​ Demonstrate an understanding of the physical properties of rocks and minerals and the effects of erosion on the landscape. Investigate, test and compare the physical properties of rocks and minerals and investigate the factors that cause erosion of the landscape. Describe the effects of human activity (e.g., land development, building of dams, mine development, erosion-preventing measures) on physical features of the landscape, and examine the use of rocks and minerals in making consumer products.

Online Resources

A list of online resources is prepared each year for teachers interested in supplementing students' learning before and after their day at the Festival.


Yvonne Storm

Special Events Coordinator

905 579 0411 ext 144



NEW CLOCA Logo high res (1).png


Camp Samac

275 Conlin Road East, Oshawa

Note: The main entrance off of Simcoe Street is not the entrance for the Festival.  Please enter off of Conlin Road East. 



Thank you to our 2019 Diamond Sponsors...

CAF America


Central Lake Ontario Conservation

Ontario Power Generation

RBC Blue Water Project

Region of Durham

TD Friends of the Environment Foundation


Tribute Communities