Monday, November 30, 2009

Microscope Project: Mold

Next time you open the fridge and see a moldy piece of bread, cheese or a strawberry, don't throw it out right away. Grab your microscope and learn a little bit first! If you have both a stereo microscope and a compound microscope, you can use each to view the mold.

Starting with the stereo microscope, take a look at the mold. Notice the texture of the mold, it may almost look soft like fabric.

Image of moldy bread at 20x magnification courtesy of King Edward VII School.

Now take the same moldy food and scrape a small piece of mold off with a knife. Place the mold on a blank microscope slide and place a cover slip on top of it. Using a high power microscope, take a look at the mold again. How does it look different? Can you identify any bacteria? Draw a picture of the images that you see and ask your science teacher to help you identify the cells in the mold.