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Music Project Ideas

Science Fair Project Idea
You've probably heard the phrase, "practice makes perfect" more times than you care to remember, but is it actually true when you use a music game as your practice for real-life singing, strumming, or drumming? You can design a science fair project to discover the answer! First, you'll need to think about how to measure how well someone is playing or singing a song in real life. Using the test you design, measure several musicians' ability to play or sing a few different songs. Then have your… Read more
Music_p023
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You'll need access to a game console and a music video game like Guitar Hero or Rock Band.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Did you know that your guitar has a secret? Yes, that's right—hidden along each string are special places where you can play harmonics and make your guitar sound like a bell! In this music science fair project, you'll find out where the main harmonics are located on a guitar, and then see how those locations are related to the length of the strings. So get out your guitar—it's time to ring in a science fair project! Read more
Music_p030
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- Less Details
Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Access to an acoustic guitar is required.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever noticed that hip-hop songs have a fast tempo, while country ballads are usually slow? Do you think there is a correlation between the number of beats per minute (bpm) in a song and the type of music? You can explore whether different genres of music have different bpm ranges by measuring the bpm in several different songs from a number of different genres. Bpm can be measured using free music software, like the one listed below in the Bibliography, or by counting all the beats you… Read more
Music_p017
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Free software can be downloaded to help measure the beats per minute in songs. See the Bibliography for more details.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Don't you just love listening to music? In the 1980s, people listened to music on the Sony® Walkman®. Now, people listen to their favorite tunes on MP3 players and on their Apple® iPhonesTM. But listening to music on devices actually started in the late 1800s and early 1900s. In those days, people would gather around their phonograph to listen to their favorite tunes—people were just as amazed with the phonograph as you would be to handle an iPhone. In this physics science… Read more
Music_p032
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability To find old vinyl record albums, you might have to visit thrift shops and secondhand stores. Refer to the Materials and Equipment list for more details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Exercise caution when using, handling, and attaching the sewing needle to the membrane.
Science Fair Project Idea
Walk into a fitness club and what kind of music do you hear? Slow, sparkling, relaxing music? Or driving, "up-tempo" songs that are designed to encourage you to move? Fitness clubs and other businesses, like restaurants and grocery stores, use background music to set the mood and to determine how fast they want their customers to move. The tempo of the background music is a key component to the environment that businesses want to create. Tempo is an important number or word inscribed by a… Read more
Music_p033
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever blown across a bottle's top and made a pleasant, resonant sound? If so, have you wondered how that note is made exactly? A bottle is actually what is called a closed-end air column. Clarinets and some organ pipes are examples of musical instruments of this type. In this science project, you will use bottles to investigate how the length of a closed-end air column affects the pitch of the note that it makes. All you need are some bottles, water, a ruler, and a chromatic tuner. Read more
Music_p007
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- Less Details
Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Did you know that making a musical instrument is not just an art, but a science, too? You can discover just how scientific by building your own xylophone (or a set of chimes) from copper pipe. First you'll need to do some research about the math and physics involved in the sounds of a xylophone. For example, there are equations that describe the transverse (side-to-side) vibrations of a pipe. These vibrations create the sounds you hear. So, to get specific sounds, xylophone makers must apply… Read more
Music_p024
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Specialty items: Tube and pipe cutter wheel, or hack saw.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Adult supervision required to cut the copper pipe.
Science Fair Project Idea
Are there some songs that always make you feel sad when you hear them? How about "Scarborough Fair," George Gershwin's "Summertime," or the Beatles' "Eleanor Rigby"? All of these songs are in a minor key. Minor keys have more intervals, or halftones, than major keys do. Some musicologists (people who study music) maintain that minor-key songs are more likely to be perceived as sad, while major-key songs are more likely to be interpreted as happy. You can research the competing explanations… Read more
Music_p018
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites You should know how to convert a simple song from a major key to a minor key, or know an experienced musician or music teacher who can help you with the conversions.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever seen a great movie and then rushed out and bought its soundtrack? Did the soundtrack bring back the thrill of an action chase? Or the sadness one of the movie's characters felt? Music is a big part of the movie experience. It intensifies the emotions in scenes so that you do not just jump when that hairy spider comes around the corner, you scream! In this music science fair project, you will find out if happy, sad, scary, and action scenes in movies use music with the same… Read more
Music_p026
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- Less Details
Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You must have access to a DVD player.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Here is a riddle for you: name an instrument that you play with your hands but never actually touch. Have you guessed the answer? It is a theremin! This unusual instrument makes sound without anyone touching it. How does a theremin work? It has an antenna that can detect the player's hand nearby, and as they move their hand around the theremin, the sound it makes changes based on the hand's position. In this music science project, you will get to use your own mini theremin to investigate… Read more
Music_p035
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability The Theremin Mini Kit for this science project needs to be specially ordered. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($40 - $80)
Safety No issues
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