Using the Foldscope in a museum setting

I have been working on developing a Foldscope activity to use in science museums and I have been experimenting with different specimens to use in the slides. I have had lots of success with some crazy dust pieces found in my museum as well as a fruit fly, some human hair and a leaf from my desk plant. People seem to really like looking at the dust and the hair (especially the root and the tip of the hair). The fly is also a hit because people are able to see the tiny leg hairs and structures on the fly.  I have found out testing the Foldscope in a museum setting that wet specimens tend to not work very well similarly the leaf has a limited life span until it deteriorates. For now I have just been using the slides provided with the Foldscope and not any homemade types.  Up next I plan on testing a  bee wing, some sand/dirt and a few other items. Basically I am on the hunt to find the most interesting specimens that hold up well over time. The perfect specimen would have cool connections to science and inspire people to keep looking at the world around them in new ways.

This dust was found in a museum in Chicago.

This dust was found in a museum in Chicago.

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