Investigate the causes and effects of moisture

  • Ask the students if they think there city is particularly damp, why are some cities damper than others? Why do they have more moisture in the air? The reason often comes down to location and geography, where the city is located can make a big difference. If a city is built on or near a swamp area, moisture comes through the ground and eventually into people’s houses. Home owners might need to buy a dehumidifier to help improve this kind of situation.

  • Talk with the children about what effects moisture can have on our lifestyles, what kind of effects can it have on our home and environment? (Fungus, mold, bacteria, damaging homes structurally, ruined clothes etc).
  • Discuss how fungus levels are affected by moisture conditions (spores in the air, suitable growth conditions etc).

Ideas and Development:
  • So how can you prevent the conditions that allow moisture to set in and mold to grow?  Let the students think about possible ways to do this. One good way is by locating moist areas and drying them out. How do we find these moist areas? One way is with an electronic moisture detector.
  • If you have access to an electronic moisture detector show how it works with a beaker of water. Explain that the electricity travels through the water before completing the circuit and lighting up an LED. A transistor is needed to amplify the current so it is big enough to light up the LED.
  • If you have electronics kits available then you can get the students to try and build their own electronic moisture detector. They can test them on plants, sponges and other moist areas.