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Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail We rely heavily on our senses to tell us about our environment. But in addition to the senses of touch, smell, taste, hearing, and sight, some animals are able to sense Earth's magnetic field. Migratory turtles and birds use this sense to guide them on long journeys. Homing pigeons use it to find their way home. New research suggests that large mammals, such as cows and deer, may also have the ability to sense the direction of magnetic north. In this animal behavior science project, you will… Read more
Zoo_p058
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Time Required Very Long (1+ months)
Prerequisites Experience with Microsoft® PowerPoint® would be helpful. You will also need a computer that can run Google EarthTM and that has Internet access.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Do you have bats in your neighborhood? Have you heard them "whoosh" by you, but not been able to see them? In this science fair project, you will be able to detect flying bats by listening in on the ultrasonic signals they produce to locate objects in their environment. The bat detector is a useful and fun tool for studying the biology of this nocturnal flying mammal. Read more
MamBio_p024
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites Provide a brief description of requirements: Since this project involves studying bats in their native environment, you should start this project only if you are confident you have bats in your neighborhood. Ask your science teacher if there are local bats that you can observe.
Material Availability You will need to purchase a bat detector for this science fair project. See the Materials & Equipment section for more details on where to purchase one.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety For this science fair project, you will be listening to bats as they fly near you. You will not be touching them or disturbing them in any way, so there are no safety issues. However, if you do see a bat on the ground, do not touch it because bats can carry dangerous diseases.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail If you've ever wondered how tall that bridge is, or how high your kite was, then this could be a good project for you. You'll learn how you can use the mathematics of right triangles to measure the height of an object with two measurements that you can make on the ground. Read more
Math_p026
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever had fun playing with sand and water, observing how little rivers you create carve their way down to the lowest point of the sandbox, backyard or beach? Some meander, others braid, and some carve a path straight down. Hyrdologists (or scientists who study water) do very much the same thing! Only they set up the model in a particular way, so observing their mini-rivers helps them answer questions about how water flow affects the environment. In this geology science project, you… Read more
Geo_p045
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Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites None.
Material Availability Readily available. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Adult help is required to cut the water or milk jugs.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever heard the expression "a canary in a coal mine"? In the 1900's and earlier, coal miners brought canaries with them into the mines to act as early warning signals. The canaries were very sensitive to low levels of dangerous gases, so if the birds stopped singing, or got sick, then the miners knew to leave immediately, even if they felt fine. As it turns out, our froggy friends are also very helpful at signaling problems, not in mines, but in and around bodies of water. Try this… Read more
EnvSci_p048
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Students must have access to a pond, lake, or marsh with abundant frogs.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Never explore natural bodies of water alone. Never pick up brightly colored frogs. Adult supervision is required.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever gone camping, looked up at the stars, and found the Big Dipper? Two stars in the dipper part of this constellation point to Polaris, the north star, which people have used for thousands of years to help them find their way. In this plant biology science fair project, you'll investigate whether plants, like moss, can help you find your way, too. Read more
PlantBio_p043
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You must have access to three lone trees that have moss growing on their bases, and that are not shaded by other trees or buildings.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail How do conservation biologists know which places are important to protect? How do nature guides know which animals can be found in which places? In this experiment you can discover how maps can be used to show how different animals are distributed in a local environment. Read more
EnvSci_p044
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail The movement of satellites is intriguing, but how do they orbit the way they do? Aerospace engineers run calculations and set up computer models to help them predict how satellites move in space, but in this astronomy science project, you will create a physical model with marbles, clay, and a cookie sheet to help you study how satellites move in space and learn from your observations. Read more
Astro_p041
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Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail "Waste not, want not" is a common saying. These four words sum up an important principle: if you "waste" an important resource, you might find you don't have enough of it when you "want" it. One of the most important resources we have is clean water. In many parts of the world, including the western part of the United States, water shortages pose serious problems. In this science project, you will build an electronic circuit that can 1) detect when it is raining and 2) shut off power, such as… Read more
Elec_p066
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Some experience with electronics would be helpful. If you are new to electronics, plan to spend some time learning about the subject prior to making the circuit. The workbook included with the kit has introductory information.
Material Availability The procedure calls for an electronics kit that can be purchased online. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Do you know what is living in your backyard? How about at the playground, or in your compost pile? Nematodes, also called roundworms, are the most abundant animal on Earth and they might be living in any of these places. In this science project you'll isolate nematodes from several soil samples to discover the best nematode habitats. Read more
Zoo_p045
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability The E. coli culture and the agar plates are specialty items. They can be ordered online (see Materials and Equipment for more details), but you will need to plan ahead.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety This science project involves the use of the bacterium E. coli. Standard microbiology and bacterial safety guidelines should be followed.
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