Science Fair Project Ideas
It's that time of year again
Time to get ready for the school Science Fair. I know where to buy the project boards, paper, and everything they may need. The hardest part about the Science Fair in my experience, is actually getting my child to pick a project. Something original and interesting. Volcanoes, as fun as they are, are way over done.
Picking a Topic
There's plenty of resources available on different projects your child can pick from. We actually own a few books full of science projects and experiments. Hands-on experiments are usually most attractive to children. All children, however, are not interested in the same things. Science, thankfully, is a broad area. So if your child is not interested in chemistry, there's plenty of other areas they can look at: Math Science, Behavioural Science, Zoology, Engineering, etc. Not sure what your child in interested in? Check out:
This is a great site with tons of ideas. It also has a Topic selection wizard to help your child find projects that your child will like. By answering a few questions about what your child likes to do, they select project ideas in those areas for your child to pick from. The projects are also labeled by grade level.
A good project should include the steps of the scientific method. The scientific method is a way to answer scientific questions by doing experiments or testing your Hypothesis and coming to a conclusion based on your findings.
The steps of the scientific method:
- Ask a Question
- Do Background Research
- Construct a Hypothesis
- Test Your Hypothesis by Doing an Experiment
- Analyze Your Data and Draw a Conclusion
- Communicate Your Results
Play it Safe
Don't forget to take safety precautions when experimenting. Know what your child is planning to do, and where. If protective eye wear or gloves are recommended, make sure they use them. Experimenting can be fun. Trips to the Emergency Room, not so much.
Setting Up Your Display Board
Display boards come in a variety of colors nowadays, not just plain white. Colorful boards are attractive, but don't overdo it with wild patterns that will distract attention from your information. Some colors that go well together- Red lettering on yellow. Blue or navy lettering on yellow. Yellow lettering on black or dark blue.
Title font should be large and easy to read. I'd suggest at least 3 inch lettering, and a plain font. Any other typed information that will be displayed on the board should be at least a 16 point font.
It is also recommended to display your information similar to a newspaper. Starting left to right down one column, then left to right on the next column.
Use lots of pictures, diagrams and any other visuals! They really catch your eye.
Know Your Subject
Being able to communicate their findings and demonstrating an understanding of the project is key! So listen to their presentation. Pretend you are the judge. Ask them questions. Role playing with your child will help them feel comfortable talking about the project. When they realize how much they know about it and can answer your questions, they will feel more confident. For most kids, speaking in front of people, is the scariest part. After a few times, hopefully, it won't be too scary.