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Science Fair Project Idea
No one can deny the devastating consequences of an oil spill on the local wildlife. Oil affects all levels of the ecosystem, from plants to fish and birds. What happens to water plants if you add motor oil to their pot? What is the effect of motor oil on the health of a goldfish, or water insects? What happens to the barbs of a bird feather if they are dipped in oil? Can you test different types of environmentally-friendly detergents for cleaning the bird feathers? Can you test different… Read more
EnvSci_p032
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Science Fair Project Idea
Try gluing wood together with different types of glue, e.g.: regular white glue, yellow wood glue, cyanoacrylate (super glue), and Liquid Nails. Glue a short piece (5-8 cm) to the center of a longer piece (15-30 cm). After the glue has dried for the recommended time, drill a small hole through the center of the joint, big enough to pass through a piece of coat-hanger wire. Cut a length of coat hanger wire, pass it through the hole, and twist the ends together to form a loop. Place the ends… Read more
CE_p021
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Science Fair Project Idea
This project asks the question "How do friendship groups change over time?" The results may support inferences about how "people skills" develop. What types of changes would you expect to see? Do you expect friendship groups to grow larger over time? Do you expect that individuals will belong to more, less or about the same number of friendship groups as they get older? Do you think there will be more or less exclusivity among groups (and how would you measure such a concept)? Do you… Read more
Soc_p021
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
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)
Science Fair Project Idea
Caramelization is the name of the cooking process that occurs as sugar is heated and the molecules begin to break apart. But what happens to the sugar as it breaks apart? And what do the physical changes mean for the flavor of the sugar? Using the Internet or cookbooks, read up on the chemistry of caramelization, then head to the kitchen with an adult to caramelize your own batch of sugar. With an adult's help, dissolve 1 1/3 cups of sugar in 2/3 cup of water. Heat the mixture in a pan over… Read more
FoodSci_p018
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Use caution when making the caramel, it is extremely hot and can burn severely if it gets on your skin. Adult supervision is required.
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever bitten into a beautiful golden-brown cookie only to realize in dismay that the bottom is burned and black? What causes that uneven baking? Can it be prevented? You can discover the answer by conducting a science fair project to determine whether different types of cookie sheets result in noticeably different cookies. First you'll need to do some background research to figure out what kinds of baking sheets you can buy. For example, there are aluminum, steel, insulated, and… Read more
FoodSci_p023
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Adult supervision recommended when baking the cookies.
Science Fair Project Idea
Whipped egg whites are used in many sweet and savory recipes. They are used to add air into cake batters, meringues, and soufflés. Egg whites, also known as albumin are 15 percent protein dissolved into water. When egg whites are beaten or whipped, the protein chains unravel. This is called denaturation. The process of whipping egg whites adds air to the mixture, in addition to denaturing the proteins. The denatured proteins create bonds with each other and trap air bubbles within… Read more
FoodSci_p036
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Yogurt is a very versatile dairy product. It's yummy eaten straight from the container, it is good for your digestive system, and it can be used in several ways for cooking. There is historical evidence that yogurt-making developed 4,500 years ago! Humans depended on yogurt-making as a way to preserve milk. Yogurt is the result of bacterial fermentation of milk. In fermentation, the bacteria consume the milk sugar, lactose, and produce lactic acid. The end-product is a thick, creamy, and tangy… Read more
FoodSci_p030
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Use caution when working with a stovetop. Adult supervision is recommended.
Science Fair Project Idea
Soil liquefaction is a phenomenon where soil that is saturated with water suddenly loses its strength and behaves like a liquid. This usually occurs due to sudden, large stresses on the soil — for example, from an earthquake. This can be very dangerous for buildings sitting on top of the soil, as they can suddenly sink into the ground! The embedded video explains soil liquefaction in more detail. Is there a way to prevent soil liquefaction? Do you think adding… Read more
Geo_p002
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Science Fair Project Idea
When you think of successful inventions from the 1900's that have dramatically changed how people live, what comes to mind? The car? Radio? TV? The computer? What about the microwave oven? You might not remember a time when microwave ovens were not a standard part of most kitchens, but your parents or grandparents probably do. They can remember when heating leftovers took a good 30 minutes in a traditional oven. Or thawing a food from the freezer meant leaving it in the refrigerator overnight.… Read more
FoodSci_p033
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Access to a microwave oven and microwave-safe cookware.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Adult supervision is required when using the microwave oven.
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