User login


Mold Terrarium: What Grows on Leftover Food?


Source Institutions

    The Exploratorium

Add to listGo to activity
Mold Terrarium: What Grows on Leftover Food?

This activity shows you how to make a mold terrarium using a jar and leftover food. Learners explore mold, an "icky but necessary" thing that helps living matter rot, return to the soil, and provide nutrients for other plants. If you use a variety of food scraps, with preservatives and without, you'll see the different kinds of mold and be able to compare the rate of growth on various foods. Note: don't put meat or fish in your mold terrarium--after a few days, these would start to smell very, very bad.

Quick Guide


Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
1 to 4 weeks

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity

Language:
English

Materials List (per group of students)


  • A clear container with a lid (Big glass jars and clear plastic containers work great, but you'll have to throw away the container when you're through)
  • Adhesive tape
  • Water
  • Some leftover food (you can use whatever is in your refrigerator), such as bread, fruit (like oranges, lemons, or grapes), vegetables (like broccoli, zucchini, or green pepper), cheese, and cookies or cake

Subjects


  • Life Sciences
    • Diversity of Life
      • Protists and Fungi
    • Ecology
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories


  • Food and Cooking

Audience


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • smell

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities

Other


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access

By:

  • Murphy, Pat; Klages, Ellen; Shore, Linda

Rights:

  • All Rights Reserved, The Exploratorium, ©1998

Share


User Lists


This resource is part of these lists: