Who doesn’t love a good ole’ science project? They allow kids to not only learn a fascinating bit of information, but also explore their capabilities via trial and error. Even if you aren’t a mad scientist, engineer, or mathematician, you don’t have to fret when it comes to assisting your children with their science project.
If you are feeling stumped and don’t have an idea of what you’re going to do, here is a great science project idea for those around the age of sixth grade or close to it.
Grow some mold
Nobody likes to consume the nasty fungus known as mold, but it certainly can be a simple and interesting science project. It grows indoors and outdoors in many places around the world, and itneeds nutrients and water to grow. For anyone who has ever left a sandwich in their locker, they know that the sight of the fungus is unnerving to the eyes. Thankfully, growing mold deliberately in the name of science is something that is far more fascinating than getting disappointed and depleted by the putrid stench of a moldy lunch item.
The purpose of the experiment
For those curious cats amongst us, selecting foods and testing their mold habits seems interesting, doesn’t it? That’s why you will want to gather at least three different foods (amid other things that will soon be addressed) in order to present them with different environments. Test your hypothesis behind which food will grow the most mold, the least, and other things like what environments will prompt extreme mold growth?
What you’ll need for the experiment
Three types of food (fruit, bread, meats, vegetables, etc) for a total of 9 samples for each one.
Plastic zip-top bags
Labeling tape and something to write with
A spray bottle with water
Something to cook with, like a stove or toaster oven
After you have gathered the supplies, the fun will begin. Cut your food up into 9 samples for each of the three foods you have selected for your experiment. Next, take three samples from each of your foods and cook them a bit before placing them in a labeled zip-top bag, making sure to not the food and environment of them.
Some of your samples will be cooked, and the next nine samples need to be sprayed with water. Again, take three samples from each food and spray them before following the same sealing protocol as aforementioned. Take the last three samples from each of the foods and simply put them as is In bags and seal them.
There is a reason we took three samples from each of the foods that are wet, dry, and cooked, as you will want to spread each set out in a different location.
Put one set of the dry, wet, and cooked foods in a refrigerator, one set in a dark place like a drawer or a closet, and one set outside in a sunny location.
You’ll monitor the foods daily, noting changes and behaviors in the foods. What foods get the most mold, the wet ones? What conditions bring on the most mold? This is a fun experiment.