Science Buddies' eighth grade science projects are the perfect way for eighth grade students to have fun exploring science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Our eighth grade projects are written and tested by scientists and are specifically created for use by students in the eighth grade. Students can choose to follow the science experiment as written or put their own spin on the project.

For a personalized list of science projects, eighth graders can use the Science Buddies Topic Selection Wizard. The wizard asks students to respond to a series of simple statements and then uses their answers to recommend age-appropriate projects that fit their interests.

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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
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Your students might know that they can burn calories, but do they know what a calorie really is? In this fun lesson plan, your students will measure the energy content of food by literally burning it using a device called a calorimeter that they will design and build themselves. This will get your students thinking about the chemistry of energy transfer as well as good nutrition, and gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "burning calories!" Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-PS3-3. Apply scientific principles to design, construct, and test a device that either minimizes or maximizes thermal energy transfer.
  • MS-PS3-4. Plan an investigation to determine the relationships among the energy transferred, the type of matter, the mass, and the change in the average kinetic energy of the particles as measured by the temperature of the sample.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
How do "instant" cold packs get cold when they are stored at room temperature, unlike a regular ice pack which must be stored in the freezer? In this lesson plan, students will explore several endothermic and exothermic reactions, and use their observations to choose the chemical reaction that best fits the design constraints for their own chemical cold pack. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-PS1-6. Undertake a design project to construct, test, and modify a device that either releases or absorbs thermal energy by chemical processes.
  • MS-ETS1-1. Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Why is the ocean vital to our planet? There are many reasons, but one important one is that the ocean is a major player in regulating our weather and climate through currents. In this lesson plan, your students will model ocean currents with cups, water, and food coloring, and explore how temperature and density differences set deep ocean waters in motion to create a global oceanic circulation system. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-ESS2-6. Develop and use a model to describe how unequal heating and rotation of the Earth cause patterns of atmospheric and oceanic circulation that determine regional climates.
Lesson Plan Grade: 5th-8th
Help your students learn about solar energy, physical forces, and other science topics with this hands-on engineering experience. This lesson plan will show you how to get your classroom started building solar-powered cars that your students can enter, if desired, in regional Junior Solar Sprint competitions. No previous experience with electronics or building things is necessary. Get the dates and location for your regional competition here. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-3. Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
  • MS-ETS1-4. Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.
Lesson Plan Grade: 4th-8th
How can technology and the internet help us solve some of the world's most pressing problems? Your students might not be ready to tackle global poverty or world peace, but they can start small by identifying a social problem in their local community. In this lesson plan they will design a solution to a problem of their choice that uses technology. It could be anything from a GPS-enabled dog collar to track lost pets, to an app that notifies local food banks when people have extra fruits and… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-1. Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or a want that includes specified criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.
  • 3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
  • MS-ETS1-1. Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.
  • MS-ETS1-2. Evaluate competing design solutions using a systematic process to determine how well they meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Does human activity impact the environment? If so, how can we measure our impact on the environment? How can we use these measurements to change our behavior? In this project, your students will explore these questions by designing and building an electronic circuit that can measure environmental parameters like water quality or light pollution. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-ESS3-3. Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Explore genetic variation through the world of taste in this problem-solving lesson plan. Working both individually and collaboratively, students figure out what kind of tasters they are, what this means about their own genetics, and how genetic mutations can lead to functional differences. This activity provides a hands-on, personalized opportunity to learn about how genotypes and phenotypes align. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-LS3-1. Develop and use a model to describe why structural changes to genes (mutations) located on chromosomes may affect proteins and may result in harmful, beneficial, or neutral effects to the structure and function of the organism.
  • MS-LS3-2. Develop and use a model to describe why asexual reproduction results in offspring with identical genetic information and sexual reproduction results in offspring with genetic variation.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Have your students read about autonomous (also called self-driving or driverless) cars in the news? How can you build a car or a robot that will stay on the road without a human driver? In this project, your students will find out by building a robot that can automatically follow a line around a homemade race course, while learning about the electromagnetic spectrum and electronic circuits. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-PS4-2. Develop and use a model to describe that waves are reflected, absorbed, or transmitted through various materials.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
Learn about potential and kinetic energy the fun way—by launching ping pong balls across the classroom with a catapult! Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-PS3-5. Construct, use, and present arguments to support the claim that when the kinetic energy of an object changes, energy is transferred to or from the object.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
In this small group activity, students will build a plant seed (burr) from a Styrofoam® ball and other crafts materials. The seed needs to be designed in a way that it can be dispersed by attaching to a mockup animal (wool glove). Students will first test if their seed attaches to the wool glove and then carry their attached seed along an obstacle course inside the classroom. As students design their plant seed and mimic its dispersal via an animal, they will realize how some plants grow… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-LS1-4. Use argument based on empirical evidence and scientific reasoning to support an explanation for how characteristic animal behaviors and specialized plant structures affect the probability of successful reproduction of animals and plants respectively.

  • MS-ETS1-2. Evaluate competing design solutions using a systematic process to determine how well they meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
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Free science fair projects.