Bill Nye: Mold Madness

Bill Nye: Mold Madness

Author: Bill Nye

This tutorial from Bill Nye introduces the difference between mold and plants through a mold growing contest on pieces of bread.

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Mold Madness


Have a contest to see who can grow the most mold!

What You Need:

1. a sealable sandwich bag
2. a piece of bread 
3. a paper towel 
4. a little soil from outdoors or a potted plant

What You Do:

1. Place your bread in the bag. Dampen the paper towel and put it in the bag with the bread and add a pinch of soil. The soil carries a few mold spores.
2. Let some air in the bag and zip it or tie it up so it’s securely sealed. Label the bag with the date and a name for your experiment, say, “Mold Test 1″. 
3. Put the bags in a warm, dark place for about three days. 
4. Look at the bread with a magnifying glass through the bag. If nothing has happened after three days, wait three more. 
5. Soon you’ll have a mold garden.

Muy Importante!


Breathing too much mold can make you sick. In dirt, mold is very spread out.

What’s Happening?

Mold is not a kind of plant. Mold is not a kind of animal. Mold is a kind of fungus. Fungi (FUNG-gye) thrive by attaching themselves to a source of food. Famous fungi include mushrooms, yeasts, mildews, and “athlete’s foot” fungus.

Mold is made up of millions of spores, or tiny microscopic seeds, all growing together in a colony. Mold comes in a variety of furry, bright-colored blobs-everything from red to bright purple, depending on the type. The fuzzy-looking spores weigh so little, tiny air currents can carry them through the air. When they land someplace where the conditions are just right, they grow into new fungi.

Mold Madness

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