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Science Fair Project Idea
Learning to play an instrument can be a lot of fun, especially when you can pretend to be a rock star as you learn! In this science fair project, you will study how your score in a music video game changes as you play and practice. You'll need a video game where you use a controller shaped like a musical instrument. Two examples include Guitar Hero and Rock Band, but there may be more! In these games, playing requires nothing more than a sense of the music's beat, and ridiculously fast fingers,… Read more
Games_p020
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You'll need access to a video game system on which you can play a music based video game.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety No issues
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
Have you ever watched an inexperienced video game player pick up a controller and start playing a game? Often the player bumbles around trying to figure out which button makes the onscreen character jump, run, turn left, or perform other actions. Some games are different though, they have control schemes that are more real-world based. Examples include Nintendo® WiiTM Tennis where you swing the Wii remote like a tennis racket and Activision's Guitar Hero® where you can play with a… Read more
Games_p022
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You should have access to a video game console or computer, and a video or computer game that requires both a regular control and a peripheral. See the Introduction for details.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Walk into any music store and you'll find a dizzying array of string choices for your classical guitar, including rectified nylon, clear nylon, carbon fluoride, bronze wound, phosphor bronze wound, silver-plated copper wire, Polytetra-flouro-ethylene (PTFE), each in a range of tensions from low to high. There is no single best brand or best material. All have their advantages and disadvantages. A set of strings that sounds "sparkling" on one guitar might sound dull on another, primarily because… Read more
Music_p021
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites You will need a guitar, a guitar tuner, and a personal computer with sound processing software, or the ability to run and execute signal-processing programs.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Here's an interesting project idea with a variation that combines computer science, physics and music. You'll need a piano in a quiet room, a microphone and a computer with digital sound recording and analysis software. The project shows you how you can make a piano string start vibrating without hitting its key. You can record the sounds on the computer, and use sound analysis software to measure the frequencies of the induced vibrations. For more details see: . Be sure to check out the… Read more
CompSci_p026
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
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 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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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
There are many different types, also called genres, of computer and video games, including racing, fighting, sports, adventure, and puzzle games. Do some genres of games appeal more to males and other genres more to females? Survey your classmates and find out in this science fair project! Read more
Games_p019
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail What is the highest note you can sing? How about the lowest? Do you think males and females can reach the same notes? How about children and adults? Find out the answers to all these questions in this "note"-worthy science fair project! Read more
Music_p027
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites To do this science fair project, you will need to know which key is Middle C on your piano or keyboard, have a friend or family member show you which key is Middle C, or use a piano that has Middle C labeled. See the Experimental Procedure tab for more details.
Material Availability This science fair project requires access to a piano, keyboard, or virtual piano (available online). See the Materials tab for details.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Does listening to classical music help or hinder concentration and performance on cognitive tasks? You'll need help from a teacher to design two short, age-appropriate worksheet tests for this experiment. The tests should be of equal difficulty. You'll also need the cooperation of several additional classroom teachers in order to test enough students (at least 50-100, see the Science Buddies resource: ). Half the students will take test A while listening to classical music and test B with no… Read more
Music_p003
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
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