If you are given four weeks to complete your science fair project then START NOW. Do not tell yourself you have several weeks. Start now! - repeat after me - Start now!
You will be amazed the amount of email I receive beginning "please help me with my school project due to be handed in yesterday". That is dumb as well as poor planning. Don't you think I pulled that stunt when I was 14 years of age?
Review very carefully your assignment as provided by your teacher, what are the requirements to be met?
Do you clearly understand each and every goal listed? If possible review this list each and every day for a few minutes over several days to possibly gain a new perspective. You will be surprised how you can begin to refine and improve your original ideas with this method.
Is it an elementary science fair project? or was it meant to be a simple quick science-fair-project-ideas not involving a lot of effort?. The basic idea of any science fair project is to demonstrate to the teacher or judges you know how to find the answer to a basic question. This is the basis of all scientific enquiry or research.
Record all the information you have managed to gather about your chosen topic from either text books, magazines or over the internet. Keep detailed notes of the sources of your information. e.g. Ian Purdie's tutorial pages - my.integritynet.com.auscience-fair-projects-ideas.htm
Clearly list the principal purpose of your science-fair-project-ideas - precisely what are you trying to find out or establish? Be sure to list any possible variables - these are things you might be able to change or vary so it will help you find your final answer.
Clearly state your original hypothesis - this is your best your guess about what the answer will finally be.
Decide and describe how you will measure and record your results.
Do the experiment as described above. Maintain a clear record of everything in one place, perhaps buy a small notebook of a suitable size for this purpose - be scientific. Write down everything you can think of, you will probably need it later.
What happened? Answer that question, then put those results down in graphs and charts wherever possible. You will be amazed how sometimes a totally unexpected picture or pattern begins to emerge from either a graph or chart.
Obviously where possible the judges would like to see a working model of your science-fair-project-ideas. It should be neat but functional, you are not expected to produce a manufacturers' working model because it most likely is a science project for a kid. But do remember that neatness really does count!. If it looks right then it probably is right!
Make it fun, but be absolutely sure other people can understand what you did. Above all show that you used the scientific method.
Tell your own story about your project and in your own words - tell the teacher what you did and exactly how you did it. Be sure to include a page that shows where you gathered all your background information.
Any decent presentation includes some pictorial presentation to convey ideas. When you look at my crystal set page you will see a schematic diagram. Why? Because this is a pictorial plan on how it is to be constructed - a bit like plans for a house. Drawings, diagrams, charts and graphs really lift any science-fair-project-ideas presentation. They will certainly give your school project that "professional" look about it.
Practice with your family acting as judges while explaining your project to them. Remember every teacher, performer or entertainer, no matter how experienced, must continuously practice their particular craft - you are of course no different.
I have heaps of ideas, do you know why? I have seven now grown up children and 14 grand-children. Want to guess how many school projects I've been involved in?
However in every one of those cases I have been able to exercise a very close supervisory role which I can't do in your case. Accordingly I have had to cut back my list quite drastically for reasons of safety. One project was a foxhole radio which is an offshoot of a crystal radio. Unfortunately it involves a razor blade as a detector. Imagine what could happen to a little brother or sister with that. A similar story emerges with using common household or kitchen chemicals, I can't supervise you!
Having said that I've provided three science projects ranging from easy, to difficult, to hard.
For this school science project you will need to be able to borrow an analogue or digital voltmeter. You will also need (a) a small plastic container which has a quantity of household salt dissolved in water (b) a small strip of scrap copper and (c) a small strip of metal with a zinc coating - I'm assuming you can't obtain a piece of zinc.
A basic old time crystal radio set - basic crystal radio set but includes a lot of design information.
Square Wave Signal Generator - Build a basic first class electronic hobbyist test instrument - ideal for trouble shooting. Includes a how to use guide.
Excellent beginner project to start your collection of amateur-radio-equipment. Like most presentations on this site LONG but quite interesting.
O.K. I lied, here's another real good one, a bit harder, more "brownie points"...
Test Dad (or Mum) to the absolute limit. No one in school is ever likely to have this project.
"A regenerative radio receiver is unsurpassed in comparable simplicity, weak signal reception, inherent noise-limiting and agc action and, freedom from overloading and spurious responses. The regenerative radio receiver or, even super-regenerative radio receiver or, "regen" if you prefer, is basically an oscillating detector receiver".
A regenerative radio receiver
How about earthquake predictions and more? The U.S. Geological Survey, a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Interior brings this page to you by the Earthquake Hazards Program, "Science Fair for Kids"
This site is actually a teacher resource but I think Public TV's Family Science Show, "Get Your Hands On Science!" is too excellent a resource for you to pass up.
In particular the alphabetical section Teacher's guide covers everything from acid rain to zoo veterinarians (A to Z).
My favourite is "car engines".
You won't be disappointed in finding a "science fair project" here I promise you.
How Electromagnets Work:
Build your own Electromagnet! Try making this special kind of magnet at home from things you may already have around the house.
Janice Vancleave's Guide to More of the Best Science Fair Projects by Janice Pratt Vancleave - 160 pages
This book by Janice Vancleave I can recommend to concerned parents and proves a very inexpensive source of the "Best Science Fair Projects". This book aims to help children to have fun and get winning results as well. Advice is given about choosing, developing and displaying a winning project, along with dozens of science fair experiments.
ORDER - U.S.A. - Janice Vancleave's Guide to More of the Best Science Fair Projects - Janice Vancleave - ORDER NOW Usually ships within 2-3 days.
by Glen Vecchione
Be a winner! Pick a proven science project from eight fields, including space, birds and insects, weather, food and nutrition, electricity, natural laws, plants, and wind and water, then follow the simple instructions for building your display. You can choose from a Moon Box, Homemade Perfume, Erupting Volcanoes, Jumping Puffed Wheat, Bubble Gum Plant Graft, Big Green Solar Machine, Kite-Sighter, and 93 more. 100 illustrations.
100 First-Prize Make-It-Yourself Science Fair Projects - Availability: This title usually ships within 2 - 3 days.
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