Microbiology lab technician Tasha Sturm decided to do something kinda cool with a handprint: see what kind of bacteria is on it.

Sturm, who works at Cabrillo College, told me the first lab project that students at her college do is swab something in the classroom — like the bottom of a shoe or a cellphone — and incubate the plates to see what kinds of bacteria grow all around us.

Years ago, she thought her kids might find it interesting to know what kinds of germs were on their hands. Plus, since it provided such a good lesson for her class, each year she has her kids make a handprint of bacteria — literally.

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