Shopping Cart
1404 Goodale Boulevard, Suite 100
Columbus, OH 43212
Phone: (614) 486-9613
Fax: (614) 486-9614

SQM Data

Stream quality monitoring (SQM or "creeking") is a great STEM learning activity for students. One of the simplest ways to monitor water quality in local streams is to sample the macroinvertebrate population. By identifying these “critters,” including crayfish, fresh-water clams, riffle be
beetles, snails, sowbugs, and a whole host of insect larvae and nymphs, and observing which ones are found in greater quantity, students learn to distinguish a healthy stream from an unhealthy stream. They also gain a greater understanding of how human actions can impact the health of our streams. 

SQM provides students with the opportunity to engage in citizen science, using the same methods that are used by Ohio EPA and ODNR to detect and report the quality of local streams. Reporting and comparing their data on the SQM web site, then 
analyzing the causes for any similarities and differences, promotes the skills of 21st Century Learners. While this data isn’t “credible” for regulatory purposes, the data students collect can be valuable information on trends in water quality, alerting our watershed coordinator to the need for further monitoring. 

Sharing that collected data with other groups can also give your students a larger picture of the health of local streams. Franklin Soil and Water has developed a web site to allow teachers to share data their students collect on stream quality monitoring field trips.
  1. Go to our Wix SQM site for background information on SQM and how to collect data.
  2. Use the SQM Detailed Picture Form for ID guides to macroinvertebrates, found under Data Collection\Data Collection Forms.
  3. Use sheet for printing to record your data. After you have collected and recorded your data, download the sheet for uploading data under Data Collection Forms and transfer your data to the Excel file spreadsheet.
  4. There are also instructions under How to Contribute Data on using a smart phone app to electronically record data in the field.
  5. To add your data to the web site, send an e-mail to watershed coordinator Kurt Keljo with your attached data file and include the name of the collection site and your school.
  6. Use the Go to Data Page button on the web site and search for data either by watershed or by organization to view stream data that others have contributed