Yellow River, Puyang, China

We describe the Yellow River as mother river, for it was from there Chinese people emerged and started our culture. It was sad to see it having various environmental issues. But at the same time when I went there and dipped the cloth into the water, I felt that I was facing something greater. I arrived there around dusk. There was a huge fog. Everything was pretty much grey except the sun, which was setting above the river. The sheep were starting to go home. While we waited for the cloth to dry we watched the country going dark and quiet. It was quite a magical moment. – Artist, Yu Su.

Yarkon River, Tel Aviv, Israel

The Yarkon River is the largest coastal river in Israel, 27.5 km long. The river originated in several springs, one of them is Tel Afek, near by Rosh Hayin, which means, fountainhead, from here it streams west into the sea. Tel Afek, was a gateway on the main trade route from north to south, called “the way of the sea”.


In ancient times, the lower section near the sea, was used for sea transport. During the British Mandate a caravan of camels crossing the river, transporting gravel from north of the Yarkon to construction sites in Tel Aviv (as can be seen on aerial photo, taken in the thirties.)
The Yarkon River has a tragic past. After 1950 the river became heavily polluted, due to urbanization and exploitation of the river.

In 1997 during the opening ceremonies of the Maccabiah games, a bridge crossing the river collapsed, four Australian athletes died from the polluted water. In 1988 the Yarkon river authority was established to revitalize the river. Since then the water quality has improved.
The Yarkon Park surrounds the river. Shaded by old eucalyptus trees, the riverbanks are rich with plants and animals. The lawns along the Yarkon River serve as getaway to nature for the many urban walkers, cyclists and joggers. – Artist, Helen Speelman

Visit Helen’s website and see more artwork here.


Pecos River, New Mexico, USA


Pecos, New Mexico. 29 miles from it’s source. Learn more

I had the pleasure of living close to this wonderful river for a time. On our frequent trips into the Pecos Wilderness we would pass over this tiny river not really grasping it’s history or magnitude. It runs parallel to and then joins the great Rio Grande. It carries vital water supplies to the parched deserts of New Mexico and West Texas. Considered one of the longer rivers in the US it played a huge part in settling what was considered the “Wild West.” Even as I dipped the cloth into the river last summer I didn’t quite get how special it was to catch it’s flow so close to the source. All of a sudden I was part of something that is 926 miles long. —  Artist, Jenna Gersbach, aka MyHungreyEye

Changhe River, Beijing, China

“2nd graders from the Tsinghua International School dipping fabric, collecting water samples, and making drawings of the surroundings at the Summer Palace in our district (Haidian).” The Changhe River creates Kunming Lake at the ancient Summer Palace in Beijing.
Regina Maniaci, Art Teacher
Lazaros Chatzimanolis, Science Teacher

Major rivers flowing through the city of Beijing, in a southerly direction from mountains in the west, create a series of canals and reservoirs that have irrigated fields for over 3,500 year. The Changhe River flows through the Summer Palace to plenish a shallow manmade lake called Kunming Lake, which was created by extending an existing body of water. The water that fills the lake originated from a spring at “Jade Mountain.” [See oral history below]

Drawings of the landscape and gardens at the Summer Palace:

“An oral history about our district . . . very interesting!” Learn about all the natural fresh water springs that once surrounded this ancient area.

Screen shot 2012-05-28 at 2.00.58 PM   Screen shot 2012-05-28 at 2.01.33 PM
Screen shot 2012-05-28 at 2.01.22 PM

Screen shot 2012-05-28 at 2.01.10 PM

A joint science and art assignment! The children loved seeing living organisms while viewing the water samples under a microscope!

The day ended with water painting in the playground!