Science fair projects – Kids think they should be fun. Teachers think they should be educational. Parents just want them to be fast and easy. Since students, teachers and parents are all involved in the process of getting ready for the science fair, most of the time, science projects have to be all of the above!
As a result, finding the perfect science fair project can be difficult. Here are five steps to finding a project that will make everybody happy.
1. Know what kind of science project is required. There are five kinds of projects, and many a student has had their project idea rejected because of a science technicality. Make sure you know if the science teacher requires an experimental (investigatory) project, a demonstration of a science principle, a report on a subject in science, a collection of items, or a scientific model. Most science fairs require an experiment, which has an hypothesis, tests the hypothesis following the scientific method, and arrives at a conclusion.
2. Find out what interests the student. What does your child do in her spare time? Does he ride horses, is she a soccer player? Is music a passion, or do you have a budding engineer on your hands? If a student is already interested in a subject, learning more about it will come naturally.
3. Determine the budget for time – and money. If your science fair is next week, you need to search for a fast and easy science project that can be done without ordering supplies from Outer Botswana. If you can’t afford special chemicals or science equipment, then you’ll need to focus on projects that can use materials easily found in your home.
4. Use all available resources for the science project search. Head to the library and look at the books on science projects. You can also use the internet. Go to your search engine and type “science project on vitamin C” or “science experiment on insulation”. Note, however, that many books and websites have demonstration projects instead of experiments. So, again, be careful that you find the right type of project.
5. Make a list of possible projects, and work together to choose the best one!