Getting involved in high school science fair projects
Of course, you’ve already heard about high school science fair projects. We can define them as a presentation of an experiment put in competition with other amateur experiments. With the help of scientific method, a learner creates a hypothesis, tests this stuff and then records the results. Obviously, high school science fair projects are only limited by a learner’s available resources and interests.
Friends, teachers as well as family members can provide can provide guidance and advice in putting together a worthy project, though it should be the learner’s own work. Experiments are required for representing the actual foundations of high school science fair projects, but presentation is a crucial component too.
Creating an informative and attractive display is important to put together a winning project. Depending on the project, competitors might require talking to the judges regarding the project and they are going to be judged on their composure as well as knowledge of the subject.
Learners normally get their start in science fair project already in elementary school. Such folks are deeply interested in experiments and science, so high school science fair projects always give them inspiration.
High school science fairs are normally held on the class, country, district, state and even national level. Traditionally, a learner is expected to win one competition to shift to a higher level, however, in some cases learners are allowed to go right to the higher levels.
Any level can offer competitors decent prizes for their participation, not to mention victory. Those students who manage to win certificates and ribbons locally, are fully eligible for trips, trophies as well as scholarships at the national high school science fair level.
- The history of high school science fair projects
High school science fairs were firstly started Edward W. Scripps and William Emerson Ritter in 1942. The project was dubbed The Science Talent Search for high school learners. 18-year old Alan J. Fletcher was the first to win American National Science Fair by demonstrating the laws of motion in Pennsylvania, 1950.
- Typical content of high school science fairs
Science fairs are traditionally intended to demonstrate actual scientific concepts on a relatively small scale. They often have to do with student health or green energy. Science fairs normally come with a clear purpose, independent variable, hypothesis, experiment results, dependent variable, to say nothing of a conclusion.
- The anatomy of high school science fair projects
It goes without saying, high school learners need to be familiar with up-to-date scientific methods as well as processes and boast a good grasp of basic science principles. High school science teachers assign corresponding projects with the only purpose to help competitors to develop the ability to apply knowledge of science processes in order to explore something new.
In fact, working on a science fair project has much common with carrying out a real world job assignment. In this case, you’ll be utilizing skills you’ve learnt in your educational institution to research a particular question, develop promising solutions and design a persuasive test.
- Regardless of the topic of your high school science fair, it should contain the following must-have components:
Proposal: That’s a brief description of your experiment you’re willing to conduct. The short paragraph will give you a clear idea of what you’re going to do. By the way, your teacher is expected to make sure that you’re planning a safe experiment
Title: It’s the name of your experiment. It would be a good thing to employ your science question as the title for your exclusive project.
Purpose: It’s a statement, which describes what you’re eager to figure out by conducting this particular experiment. Your purpose explains why you’re so interested in the newly chosen topic and what you’re going to learn. In this section, you’re welcome to stress the whole importance of your experiment.
Hypothesis: Here you’re expected to predict what might happen during your experiment. Evidently, your prediction needs to be built around certain observations, knowledge and some research.
Materials list: Specify all the equipment as well as resources required for this particular experiment.
Procedure: It’s a step-by-step set of clear instructions for your experiment. Of course, it needs to be detailed enough, stuffed with all necessary measurements.
Results: As the name suggests, here you can share your hard earned results.
Research paper: You’re expected to write two or three page paper on the topic related to your scientific experiment. Don’t forget to illustrate the history of similar inventions or experiments.
Bibliography and references: There’s nothing to explain here, as the name suggests the real purpose of the section.
Science fair project ideas
Are you out of worthy ideas for your high school science fair? That’s not a problem as here below you’ll find plenty of them.
How do changes in acidity influence the survival rates of an invertebrate population?
Well, in your background research you require determining the average pH of the surface or groundwater in various areas of the country. You’re welcome to discuss why and how acid rain forms and how human beings are used to monitoring environmental pH. Specify what’s being done in order to diminish acid rain and what might happen if people fail to control this.
Secondly, you require hatching some brine shrimp eggs right in a glass container. You need to have shrimp hatched in a saltwater solution. For adjusting the pH of your hatchery to 7.5, make use of baking soda as well as a pH meter.
You need to hypothesize regarding the effects of a surging acid environment on various animals.
The next stage suggests dividing your shrimp into several groups in different containers. Don’t forget about leaving a control group in the original hatchery and maintaining it at pH 7.5.
After a while, you require increasing the pH of the test aquariums gradually by simply adding a couple of drops of white vinegar to the water every day. Do it very slowly, as steep changes will terminate your shrimp. Adjust the pH there to the pH levels in various parts of your country.
You should feed your brine shrimp just a couple of grains of yeast every other day. Every group should obtain the equal amount of yeast.
What materials can be employed to make effective pigments?
You’re expected to thoroughly research the ways in which ancient tribes as well as medieval artists were used to making the paints utilized for their masterpieces. In fact, some of them were toxic and dangerous enough, such as mercuric sulfide or arsenic, but others were quite safe and they could be recreated in your science fair.
Polish a tiny piece of copper using steel wool and have it brushed with vinegar. Have it dried and then scrape off the green verdigris. You require saving the flakes in an envelope.
Have the soot on a glass candle holder scraped.
You require brewing some strong tea, adding just a few iron fillings or iron nails and a teaspoon of vinegar. Then you should steep the mixture overnight and remove the iron. The mixture needs to be kept in a tiny glass jar with a lid.
You should mix the ready-made pigments with raw egg in order to reconstitute them. Don’t forget to research other fixatives employed by ancient artists.
Utilize vellum smooth paper to stimulate the paper employed by medieval monks or utilize artist’s canvas for the testing surface. If you’re particularly interested in cave paintings, you require using smooth tiles for stimulating cave walls.
Hypothesize regarding other ways to get pigments and carry out experiments with other fixatives.
Do all this stuff using gloves and avoid tasting any of your solutions, if you don’t want to fall ill or even die. If you employ pots in your experiments, make sure you aren’t going to use it for your cooking. By the way, boiling unknown plants outdoors is a good idea.
Apart from that, you may try researching other historic processes, including fabric dyes, soap making, papermaking, and so on.
How increase the overall amount of oil, which can be moved through a pump?
In this particular experiment, you’ll turn an ordinary spray bottle into a powerful pumping station.
For this purpose you need a clear spray bottle, with the help of which, you’ll emulate a crude oil pumping station. You require half-filling the bottle with pea-sized gravel and adding about 100 millimeters of vegetable oil. You should replace the spray top in order to ensure that the long bottom tube of your spray apparatus is as far down in your bottle as possible.
You require attaching one end of a piece of aquarium tubing right to the outside of the spray head and putting the other end in a graduated cylinder. You should pump the spray handle in order to increase the pressure in the bottle. It’s up to you to determine how much oil it could be pumped out.
Hypothesize regarding various ways to increase the overall amount of oil to be pumped from the bottle. Consider a possibility of changing conditions of viscosity, solution or temperature to drastically increase your output. When doing your research, explore promising ways in which oil producers get oil from underground reservoirs as well as shale formations.
Tackle a problem in the smart way
There’s no doubt that science has always been problem solving. There’re lots of problems to be tackled in every field of human interest. You require starting your science project by simply thinking about an actual problem in a certain area you’re interested in. Indeed, your sincere interest will greatly help you to complete your high school science fair successfully.
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