Driving Question

Can mold grow in our school?


In this unit, focused on MS-LS2-1, students investigate and use programmable sensor technologies to monitor their school for the conditions that support mold growth. Students observe a phenomenon in which mold is discovered in a school. Students begin to ask questions about what conditions are necessary for mold to grow and what mold need to live and reproduce. Students use sensors to plan and conduct an investigation to determine what conditions exist in their school setting. Students analyze their data and create visualizations to make sense of their findings. Using their data as evidence students create a mold mitigation plan with recommendations for controlling conditions in the school to inhibit mold growth. As an optional extension, students complete a design challenge where they build detectors that determine if an area has become hospitable to mold growth.

What Students Figure Out

By the end of the unit, students develop ideas about:

  • The environmental factors that mold need to grow and how the availability of these resources can cause mold populations to increase or decrease. 
  • How to utilize programmable sensor technologies to collect, analyze, visualize, and interpret relevant data.

 Targeted NGSS Performance Expectation

  • MS-LS2-1. Analyze and interpret data to provide evidence for the effects of resource availability on organisms and populations of organisms in an ecosystem.

Mold Storyline Summary
Curriculum Driving Question: Does our school have the right conditions to support mold growth? Unit Driving Questions: How and why does mold grow? Can mold grow in our school? How can we make our school less hospitable to mold growth?

A graphic image of the Mold Storyline Summary is available: contact schoolwidelabes@colorado.edu