Nancy B's Mighty Microbes

Grades 3 and Up

Nancy B


1 pound, 1 ounce

Available: 0

Science : Biology

EI-5362 — Educational Insights

Is there science behind the "quot;five second rule"quot;? What kind of bacteria live on your toothbrush? Grow and observe bacteria and learn about different types of germs!

  • Stimulates an interest in biology and microbiology
  • Explores the concepts of bacteria and fungi, control and variable, and how microbes affect our everyday lives
  • Provides hands-on experience with scientific tools
  • Journaling activities encourage creativity
  • The Mighty Microbes Lab turns "quot;eww"quot; into "quot;aha!"quot; by encouraging study and understanding of (harmless) tiny colonies of bacteria and fungi
  • Features 4 Petri dishes, 250 ml standing, round-bottomed flask with volume markings, and stopper with hole to fit on top of flask
  • Also includes spreader for spreading bacteria, waterproof colony counter grid, loupe with 8x magnification, tweezers, funnel, pipette, gloves, and nutrient agar packet plus recipe to make more agar
  • 22-Page activity journal


Choking Hazard — Small parts. Not for children under 3 years.

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Experiments with Seeds

Author: The Learning Bug

SeedlingThe growth of seeds provide many experiments that allow students to make scientific observations over an extended period of time. The results lend themselves well to graphing.

We've found that pea, cat-grass, and radish seeds all sprout quickly and grow well. Here are just a few inquiries you can explore with seeds.

  • Is the size of the seed related to the speed of germination?
  • Will seeds germinate on gelatin?
    Use clear unflavored gelatin from the grocery store.
  • With which liquids do seeds grow best?
    Compare pure water, salty, sugary, acidic (vinegar), or alkaline (baking soda solution).
  • How much sun does a seed need to sprout?
    Cover sprouts with boxes, and remove the boxes for a specific amount of time each day, or cover sprouts with boxes - each box having progressively larger holes.
  • Does magnetism affect the growth of plants?
  • Compare the effects of presoaking seeds to starting with dry seeds.
  • Investigate how planting depths of seeds affect the rate of emergence.
  • Does the composition of the soil affect the germination of seeds?
    Mix various amounts of sand, salt, alkaline (baking soda) or other substrates in with the soil, and then water with regular water.
  • Do plants follow the scientific law of conservation of matter?
    Plant seeds in a jar with soil and enough water to germinate and then tightly close the lid. Do not open the lid during the entire experiment. Use an accurate scale to weigh the jar each day over the course of germination, growth, and decay of the plant. The weight remains constant because the seed/plant converts water and soil into living cells. Matter (measured as mass) is being changed - not created or destroyed.

Before you start the experiment, write down what you think will happen. You might turn out to be right or wrong. That's great. Science is all about finding out how and why things work as well as why they don't work.

A good scientist is a good observer. Look closely at your sprouts every day to track their progress. Write down your observations in a science journal. Take pictures, and measure the results. Your eyes might tell you a plant looks bigger, but you'll only know for sure if you measure it with a calibrated tool like a ruler.

  • Used in this tip:
  • Seeds
  • Jars, Jumbo test tubes, or planting boxes
  • Potting soil
  • Magnifying lens
  • Household items
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