Science fair projects that are easy
Give your child some homework help with one of these easy science fair projects.
The beginning of another school year brings all the hassles and homework back to family evenings. Often accompanying book reports, times tables, and spelling lists is the announcement, "I have to do a project for the science fair." This statement can strike fear into the heart of many a parent, but don't despair. These science fair projects that are easy will keep your kid – and you! – in good standing with their science teacher.
Which way do plants grow?
Seems like a simple enough question to answer: they grow up, right? But how do plants know which way is up? If a plant is turned on its side, will it grow horizontally, or will the stems turn to grow upward?
A houseplant (not a clinging vine type of plant)
Something to lean the plant on, like a stack of books
Do some research into how plants grow so that you can make an educated hypothesis on what you expect to happen during your experiment. Record your hypothesis. For instance, "I expect the plant to continue growing straight from the stems even after I turn the plant on its side" or "I expect the plant's stems to bend in order for the plant to continue growing toward the sky."
Then, lean your houseplant sideways against the stack of books (or another object) until it is almost horizontal. Check on the plant daily for a period of one to two weeks, continuing to water the plant as usual. Record your observations daily.
Record the results:
First, write down your observations on how the plant was growing before the experiment. Then write down what you expected to happen during the experiment period. Third, write down what you observed of the plant during the period of time that it was leaning sideways. Draw pictures to demonstrate your observations.
Is there a difference in resting pulse rates between boys and girls?
An even number of male and female students of the same approximate age
Paper and pencil for recording results
A clock or watch with a second hand
Do some reading about the circulatory system and how pulse rates differ in individuals. Then record your hypothesis, which is your statement of what you expect to be the results of your experiment. Will males or females have a higher resting pulse rate?
Make a chart to record the results of your experiment. There should be a column for the gender and age of each subject, and a column to record their pulse rate.
Have each subject sit still in a chair in order for their pulse rate to slow to a resting rate. The amount of time you use should be the same for each subject in order to ensure accurate results. After the time has passed, take the subject's pulse using their wrist or the pulse in their neck (use the same pulse for each person). Watch your clock, and count the number of beats for 60 seconds. Write down the results.
Record the results:
When you are finished taking the pulses of all the subjects, average the pulse rates for the boys. Then average the rates for the girls. What did you find? Record your observation, and make a chart to demonstrate your results.
Does playing music during exercise affect a person's heart rate? Do different kinds of music affect a person's heart rate differently?
A group of people willing to exercise – at least 10
A rock song that is at least 3 minutes long
A classical song that is at least 3 minutes long
A watch or clock with a second hand
Paper and pencil for recording the results
Record your hypothesis: what effect do you think music has on a person's heart rate while exercising. Then, assemble your participants.
Follow this procedure with each participant. First, have the person jog in place for three minutes in perfect silence. After the three minutes are up, immediately take the person's pulse for 60 seconds, and record the results. Wait several minutes for the subject's heart rate to return to normal.
Next, have the person jog in place for three minutes while the rock song plays. Again take and record a 60-second pulse, and then let the person's heart rate return to normal.
Lastly, have the person jog in place for three minutes while the classical song plays. Take and record a 60-second pulse.
After all of your subjects have performed all three steps, graph the results on a line chart. Write down what you have observed.
As you can see, a science fair project doesn't have to be complicated. Find a topic you are interested in, and you can usually form a science project around it. For more science fair projects that are easy, check out Science Fair Central at Discovery Education or Dr. Shawn's Super Science Fair Support Center.