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Fungus Among Us

Author(s): Nancy Moreno, PhD, Barbara Tharp, MS, and Judith Dresden, MS.

The Science of Fungi

Students observed the following properties of air in this activity.

Fungi grow from spores. Fungi spread by producing spores, tiny particles that can remain suspended in the air for long periods of time. The powdery appearance and bright colors of many kinds of mold actually are caused by the spores they have produced. 

Fungal spores are present almost everywhere. Fungi are members of the fungus kingdom and are found almost everywhere. Along with some bacteria and other organisms, fungi are the decomposers of our world. They break down the remains of dead plants, animals, and other living things in order to obtain the energy they need to grow and reproduce.  

Molds and other fungi grow in damp places. Fungi grow especially well in damp places and can attack cloth, paint, paper, leather, insulation on cables, and even photographic film. Inside buildings, fungi can grow in damp places, such as basements, shower curtains, food storage areas, and window air conditioning units. 

Funded by the following grant(s)

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH

The Environment as a Context for Opportunities in Schools
Grant Numbers: 5R25ES010698, R25ES06932

Houston Endowment Inc.

Houston Endowment Inc.

Foundations for the Future: Capitalizing on Technology to Promote Equity, Access and Quality in Elementary Science Education