Teachers Parents Students

Staff Picks: Top Project Ideas from 2011

The staff of scientists, editors, and writers at Science Buddies work throughout the year to develop exciting new Project Ideas that encourage and enable hands-on student exploration of inspiring areas of science and cutting-edge topics of research.

We have more than 1000 Project Ideas for K-12 students in our library of free science, technology, engineering, and math Project Ideas. As the year winds down, we asked our staff to pick their favorites from the Project Ideas introduced in 2011 and share why they selected the projects they picked.



    Gauss Image
  • Ken, Founder and President: Build a Gauss Rifle!

    Why? "The Project Idea uses neodymium magnets to visually demonstrate important physical principles about acceleration, mass, velocity, and the conservation of momentum."






    Physics Image

  • Hugo, Chief Software Architect: Making It Real: Incorporating Physics in Video Games

    Why? "Physics was my favorite subject in high school. Now I develop software. This Project Idea brings both of them together—this field is what makes the current generation of video games so awesome."



    Students at Computer Image
  • Claire, Product Design Engineer: Creating a Video Game for the Blind
    Why? "I love that this project idea takes something often thought of as purely entertainment—video games—and shows how they can be used to solve common social issues like blindness."


    Planes Image
  • Debbie, Web Editor: How Far Will It Fly? Build and Test Various Paper Planes

    Why? "Making paper airplanes is a great, creative way to spend free time with my son and a great way to recycle paper around the house—especially holiday wrapping paper. What boy doesn't want to make a flying object to launch at his sisters?"





    Plants Image
  • Teisha, Staff Scientist: Hydroponics: Gardening Without Soil

    Why? "This project focuses on hydroponics, an emerging gardening technique that allows people to grow plants without soil, which creates new opportunities for commercially growing crops. Because having enough food is an issue in developing countries, new technologies for improving crop yields and crop adaptability are really important to explore."


    Drums Image
  • Kaarin, Project Manager: Customize Your Own Drum Set!

    Why? "This computer science project combines my son's love of creating music with his interest in how video games work. Combining the PicoBoard with Scratch is great!"


    Comets Image
  • Yvette, Email Support: Dirty Snowballs: How a Comet's Size Affects How Fast It Melts

    Why? "Comets have always fascinated me since I was a child, and they come in all different shapes and sizes, so this project allows you to investigate how the physical properties of comets can affect their lifespan!" (Another favorite for Yvette is A Sweet Sequence: The Cacao Genome*: I love chocolate, and this project combines both chocolate and genomics, a rapidly rising field of science, to find new ways of protecting cacao trees and increasing cacao production!)

thumbnail
A few year ago, Laura did a science project on bacteria and water bottles. Today, she is a finalist in a global challenge and encouraging other girls to get excited about STEM!

thumbnail
You like your gelatin desserts solid and jiggly but not runny, right? A kitchen chemistry experiment reveals why certain gelatin and fruit combinations might appear at a potluck or picnic and not others. For this student and her family, the...

thumbnail
Egg science comes over-easy this time of year. Whether you are boiling eggs, dyeing eggs, or both, there are easy questions you can ask with your kids to turn the activity into a hands-on science experiment that everyone will enjoy....

thumbnail
This great guide and collection of family-friendly activities lets kids explore the history of robotics and put robotics engineering concepts to use with hands-on projects at home. Introduce Students to Robotics Engineering Robotics: DISCOVER THE SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY OF THE...

thumbnail
School and family science weekly spotlight: floating eggs.

thumbnail
There was no singular moment of Big Data Bang, but we are living in and heading towards a time of seemingly endless and exponential data explosion—and the race to create solutions and strategies to help tame, store, organize, and make...



Your Science!
What will you explore for your science project this year? What is your favorite classroom science activity? Email us a short (one to three sentences) summary of your science project or teaching tip. You might end up featured in an upcoming Science Buddies newsletter!


Help With Your Science Project

The following popular posts are designed to help students at critical stages of the science project process.


You may print and distribute up to 200 copies of this document annually, at no charge, for personal and classroom educational use. When printing this document, you may NOT modify it in any way. For any other use, please contact Science Buddies.