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Dust Catchers

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

Dust Catchers

This activity uses guided inquiry to teach students that dust is present in the air inside houses and buildings. By making and using a simple device (a dust catcher) to collect particles from the air at home or in the classroom, students will discover that filters help to remove larger particles (like dust, mold, animal dander) from indoor air. Students will predict, measure, observe, estimate, graph, and draw conclusions based on their investigation. 

Science concepts addressed include the following.

  • Dust consists of individual particles of different substances.
  • Even air that appears to be clean may contain dust and other pollutants.

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