In this blog we're sharing unique science fair project ideas that utilize Grow.bio's Grow It Yourself™ mycelium materials! These projects are not only fun and educational but also promote environmental awareness and creativity. 🚀
What is Mycelium?
Mycelium is the vegetative part of a fungus, consisting of a network of fine white filaments (hyphae). It's known for its remarkable natural properties like fire retardation, acoustic and thermal insulation, and biodegradability, making it an excellent material for a variety of applications.
Why Choose Mycelium for Your Project?
- Sustainability: Mycelium is a renewable resource that can be grown easily and has a low environmental impact.
- Versatility: It can be molded into various shapes and has diverse applications.
- Educational Value: Working with mycelium introduces students to concepts in biology, ecology, and environmental science. We have free STEAM lesson plans that bring these mycelium activities to your classroom!
🧱 Mycelium as a Sustainable Building Material–
Objective: Test the strength, load bearing, and durability of mycelium bricks
Learning Outcome: Understanding of changes in GIY recipe’s correlation between density and structural integrity.
Add on Bonus: Compare other additives to see how the strength and density are affected!
🥚 Mycelium as a Protective Cushion–
Objective: Test the protective cushioning properties of mycelium.
Process: Grow mycelium sphere halves with sculpting mix. Place egg within the mycelium sphere, seal, and drop from a height to see if the egg remains intact.
Learning Outcome: Understanding the rebounding properties of GIY mycelium material as a protective packaging for fragile items.
Add on Bonus: Compare to other protective packaging products on the market!
Additional Project Ideas:
🪱 Biodegradation of Mycelium–
Objective: Investigate how quickly mycelium decomposes compared to other materials.
Process: Place mycelium samples in different environmental conditions and measure their decomposition over time.
Learning Outcome: Understanding of difference between compostable, industrially-compostable and biodegradable.
❄️ Mycelium Insulation Properties–
Objective: Test the insulation properties of mycelium.
Process: Create a mycelium panel and measure its thermal conductivity.
Learning Outcome: Exploration of eco-friendly insulation options.
🌱 Mycelium and Plant Growth–
Objective: Assess the effect of mycelium on plant growth.
Process: Grow plants in soil mixed with mycelium and compare their growth with plants in regular soil.
Learning Outcome: Understanding of mycelium’s role in soil health and plant growth.
💧Mycelium and Water Filtration–
Objective: Explore mycelium’s potential in water filtration.
Process: Design a simple water filtration system using mycelium and test its efficacy.
Learning Outcome: Insights into natural water purification methods such as mycoremediation.
🔊 Mycelium as Soundproofing Material–
Objective: Investigate mycelium's sound-absorbing properties.
Process: Create panels of mycelium of various designs and measure their soundproofing ability.
Learning Outcome: Understanding of sustainable soundproofing material alternatives.
These project ideas are just the starting point; the versatility of mycelium means the possibilities are endless. We encourage you to think creatively and explore the potential of this remarkable material.
Did you test mycelium in your science fair? We'd love to hear about it! Join the community of young environmental scientists and professionals making a difference by teaching about the wonders of mycelium. Share your ideas or projects with us on the GIY Community Forum to inspire others on what is possible!
P.S. We offer year-round educational discounts! 🎉