Question: Can You Grow Slime Mold?

Summary: In this experiment we will explore the world of Amoebas (Single cell organism with no definitive shape) by growing slime mold, a substance made of millions of Amoebas grouped together. 

Materials Needed:

(Any of The Materials Highlighted in Blue are Clickable Links for Purchasing)

Petri dish

2 pie-sized dishes with clear lids

Paper towel

Distilled water

1-ft length of rubber tubing

Scissors

Rubber or Nitrile gloves

Slime mold samples (These can be collected in a moist wooded area)

Uncooked rolled oats

Colored pencil

Eye dropper

Different cereals and/or fruit (for slime mold food)

Vinegar and/or nail polish remover (to add as a toxin)

Project Procedure:

  1. Wear rubber or nitrile gloves to prevent contamination of your set up.
  2. Cut three one-inch lengths of rubber tubing, and then cut down the length of the tubing so they are open circles.
  3. Fit the tubing pieces around bottom of the pie dish as shown in the diagram.
  4. Place the petri dish inside the pie dish.
  5. Cut out a circle of paper towel larger than the petri dish and lay it on top of the petri dish.
  6. Wet the paper towel thoroughly with distilled water.
  7. Place the clear lid of the pie dish over the set up.

 

Slime Mold Growth Setup

 

Grow the mold!:

  1. Place a sample of the slime mold on the paper towel with a drop of water.
  2. Once the slime mold is rehydrated and moving around, place an uncooked oat in contact with it.
  3. Keep the dish covered wheneveryou are not feeding the mold.
  4. Once the mold starts to grow larger, place more uncooked oats in its path and watch it grow!
  5. Keep the paper towel moist (you can use a spray bottle filled with distilled waterto mist the paper towel).
  6. Throughout the experiment, take pictures of the mold or make sketches to document the life of the mold. Use the colored pencils to note any color or size changes. Record your observations.

Experiment!:

  1. On different trials, try using different cereals or fruit to feed the molds. What helps the mold grow best? What foods do the molds prefer?
  2. On other trials, try added small drops of toxins, like vinegar or nail polish remover. What happens? Why?
Posted by Isaac Fornari on 11 September, 2015 earth science projects, elementary, middle school |
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