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The Water Cycle
This interactive diagram of the water cycle invites students to click on a part of the cycle to get information about streamflow, surface runoff, freshwater storage, ground-water discharge, ground-water storage, infiltration, precipitation, snowmelt, runoff to streams, springs, condensation, evaporation, transpiration, water in the atmosphere, ice and snow, and oceans. A summary of the water cycle on a single webpage is also available as text with pictures in about fifty languages, text only in thirteen languages, or diagram only.
Intended for grade levels:
  • Intermediate (3-5)
  • Middle (6-8)
  • High (9-12)
Type of resource:
  • Visual:
    • Illustration - scientific
  • Text:
    • Ref. material
Subject:
  • Atmospheric science
  • Cryology
  • Hydrology
Technical requirements:
No specific technical requirements, just a browser required
Cost / Copyright:
No cost
Information presented on this website is considered public information (unless otherwise noted) and may be distributed or copied. Use of appropriate byline/photo/image credit is requested. We strongly recommend that USGS (United States Geological Survey) data be acquired directly from a USGS server and not through other sources that may change the data in some way. While USGS makes every effort to provide accurate and complete information, various data such as names, telephone numbers, etc. may change prior to updating. USGS welcomes suggestions on how to improve our home page and correct errors. USGS provides no warranty, expressed or implied, as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of furnished data.
DLESE Catalog ID: DLESE-000-000-007-517
Educational standards:
  • National Science Education Standards (NSES):
    • K-4:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Evidence, models, and explanation
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Changes in earth and sky
        • Objects in the sky
    • 5-8:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Evidence, models, and explanation
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Structure of the earth system
    • 9-12:
      • Unifying concepts and processes:
        • Evidence, models, and explanation
      • D - Earth and space science:
        • Energy in the earth system
        • Origin and evolution of the earth system
Resource contact / Creator / Publisher:
Publisher: United States Geological Survey