What are the three main waterway systems in Christchurch? How do we contribute to them?

We can currently run a modified version of this programme at your school. Please contact us with any enquiries.

Students explore the fascinating wastewater journey at the Christchurch Treatment Plant, including finding out what happens to everything that goes down the drain. Be prepared for a revival of the senses – this can be a smelly one.

Please note special adult:student ratios are required. 

Book a Learning Through Action school programme

Risk analysis and management information (RAMS) will be sent out once a programme booking is confirmed. If you require this at any other stage please email LTA@ccc.govt.nz or contact us(external link).

Programme overview

Year level 5 to 13
Curriculum Level 2 to 8
Availability Currently on hold until further notice
Site Christchurch Waste Water Treatment Plant
Cost Free
Number of students Maximum of 35
Special requirements Closed in shoes must be worn

Key concepts

  • Sustainability
  • Natural cycles for dealing with waste
  • Technological processes
  • Simple biochemistry
  • Personal responsibility for action
  • Three waters system

Lesson description

Treat your senses to a visit to the Christchurch Wastewater Treatment plant.

Students will get to see up close how wastewater from a large city goes through an amazing process and is returned to the environment.

Become an expert on different parts of the process, then share the knowledge on an interactive tour of the plant.

Students are challenged to share ways to minimize their impact on our wastewater system by making good decisions.

Closed-in shoes must be worn.

Learning outcomes

We are learning to:

  • Describe one or more parts of the wastewater treatment cycle
  • Consider the implications of disposing of liquid waste
  • Describe the natural processes that are used in the treatment of wastewater
  • Name two key issues about the treatment of wastewater
  • Name two by-products from wastewater treatment
  • Explain to others the best way to deal with wastewater in Christchurch and justify their decision
  • Identify actions they can take to reduce the amount of wastewater produced in their homes.

Key competencies

Using language, symbols and texts

Through investigating oral and visual text, symbols and charts, students will uncover the secrets of the processes taking place at the Christchurch Wastewater Treatment Plant.


Students will be able to justify their decisions and contributions to a sustainable wastewater system.

Managing self

Students are encouraged to justify the actions they will take as a result of their understanding of the information they learned in the programme.

Participating and contributing

Students can become actively involved in helping to secure a sustainable future for our communities by identifying ways of maintaining environmentally friendly waster systems.

Relating to others

Students are encouraged to see how they are an important part of the wastewater process, and how their actions can impact on others and the environment.

Achievement objectives

Curriculum area Strand and level Objective
Nature of Science
Levels 2 to 4
Investigating in science
Communicating in science
Participating and contributing
  Planet Earth and Beyond
Levels 2 to 4
Earth Systems
Interacting systems
  Living World
Levels 2 to 8
Life processes
  Material World
Levels 2 to 8
Chemistry and society
Technological Knowledge
Levels 2 to 6
Technological products
Technological systems
  Nature of Technology
Levels 2 to 8
Characteristics of technology
Characteristics of technological outcomes
Social Sciences
Tikanga ā-Iwi
Levels 2 to 8 Social studies

NCEA standards

Level 1




1.2 AS90926
1.3 AS90927


1.2 AS90931


1.11 AS90950
1.12 AS90951

Generic Technology

1.7 AS91050
1.8 AS91051
1.9 AS91052
1.11 AS91054

Processing Technologies

1.61 AS91083

Level 2

Subject Standard
Biology 2.8 AS91160
Chemistry 2.3 AS91163
Earth and Space Science 2.7 AS91193
Education for Sustainability 2.1 AS90810
2.2 AS90811
2.6 AS90814
2.4 AS91733
Generic Technologies 2.5 AS91358
Processing Technologies 2.61 AS91352

Level 3

Subject Standard
Biology 3.2 AS91602
Chemistry 3.3 AS91389
Earth and Space Science 3.2 AS91411
Education for Sustainability 3.4 AS90831
Generic Technology 3.5 AS91612
3.8 AS91615
3.10 AS91617
3.13 AS91618