Archives for February 2009

What is Density?

Density is an interesting scientific subject that is sometimes a little bit hard to understand. What is density? Sometimes dense means somebody has a hard head. But in science, dense tells how closely “packed” or “crowded” a particular thing is.

Here’s a way to understand it better. You’ll need two sandwich size zip close bags and a big bag of cotton. Loosely fill the first bag with cotton. Count how many cotton balls you put in.

The bag is full of cotton, right?

Now, take a second bag, and put twice as many cotton balls into it.

It’s full of cotton, too.

Both of these bags are now full, but the second one is more densely packed than the first. It’s also heavier.

That’s what density is.

Now try this cool science project about the density of liquids. Take a jar, and add 1/2 cup oil, 1/2 cup water, and 1/2 cup syrup. Add them all at the same time. What happens? Oil is less dense than water. And syrup is more dense than water. As you can see.

There’s a lot more that you can discover about density. The concept of density can turn into a cool science project.

Read about density at Watch This! Science Projects.

Static Electricity Science Project

Static Electricity Science Project – Have you ever heard the saying “opposites attract”? You may or may not agree with it, but in science, it’s true – opposites do attract.

 

All matter – which is almost everything that you can see – is made up of atoms. Atoms are tiny particles that are the building blocks of everything you can see. Trees, rocks, fish, water, and YOU are made of billions and billions incredibly small atoms. Atoms are made up of even tinier part, and three of these parts are: protons, neutrons, and electrons. Protons and neutrons are in the center of an atom, like the sun is in the center of the solar system. The electrons spin around the center, like planets, except a whole lot faster.

In a picture of an atom, the protons have a plus sign on them. That’s because they have a positive charge. Electrons have a negative charge, so they’ve got a minus sign on them. And positive charges like to hang around negative charges. In an atom, there is usually one proton for every electron – sort of like two teams with equal numbers of players. One proton to one proton means that the atom is balanced. Everything is balanced, and everybody is happy.

But there are certain kinds of atoms that have a habit of taking electrons from other electrons, almost like a dog getting burrs on its coat. This happens a lot when atoms bump against each other. When one atom takes electrons from another, it ends up with more electrons than protons, and it’s not balanced any more. We say it is negatively charged. When atoms are negatively charged, they don’t like it, so they try their best to get near other atoms that are missing electrons. They really want to be balanced.

One of our reports is about atoms that aren’t balanced. In the demonstration, the student will “charge” a pie plate, and then show the class how the electrons jump back to where they belong. Take a look at the video.

Find out the secret of how to do this cool – and shocking! – project in our Watch This! Science Projects by clicking right here.


Nature Science Project – Bird Watching

Nature Science Project Press Release:

JOIN THE GREAT BACKYARD BIRD COUNT

Count for Fun, Count for the Future

New York, NY and Ithaca, NY—Bird and nature fans throughout North America are invited to join tens of thousands of everyday bird watchers for the 12th annual Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC), February 13-16, 2009.

A joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society, this free event is an opportunity for families, students, and people of all ages to discover the wonders of nature in backyards, schoolyards, and local parks, and, at the same time, make an important contribution to conservation. Participants count birds and report their sightings online at www.birdcount.org.

“The Great Backyard Bird Count benefits both birds and people. It’s a great example of citizen science: Anyone who can identify even a few species can contribute to the body of knowledge that is used to inform conservation efforts to protect birds and biodiversity,” said Audubon Education VP, Judy Braus. “Families, teachers, children and all those who take part in GBBC get a chance to improve their observation skills, enjoy nature, and have a great time counting for fun, counting for the future.”

Anyone can take part, from novice bird watchers to experts, by counting birds for as little as 15 minutes (or as long as they wish) on one or more days of the event and reporting their sightings online at www.birdcount.org. Participants can also explore what birds others are finding in their backyards—whether in their own neighborhood or thousands of miles away. Additional online resources include tips to help identify birds, a photo gallery, and special materials for educators.

The data these “citizen scientists” collect helps researchers understand bird population trends, information that is critical for effective conservation. Their efforts enable everyone to see what would otherwise be impossible: a comprehensive picture of where birds are in late winter and how their numbers and distribution compare with previous years. In 2008, participants submitted more than 85,000 checklists.

“The GBBC has become a vital link in the arsenal of continent-wide bird-monitoring projects,” said Cornell Lab of Ornithology director, John Fitzpatrick. “With more than a decade of data now in hand, the GBBC has documented the fine-grained details of late-winter bird distributions better than any project in history, including some truly striking changes just over the past decade.”

Each year, in addition to entering their tallies, participants submit thousands of digital images for the GBBC photo contest. Many are featured in the popular online gallery. Participants in the 2009 count are also invited to upload their bird videos to YouTube; some will also be featured on the GBBC web site. Visit www.birdcount.org to learn more.

Businesses, schools, nature clubs, Scout troops, and other community organizations interested in the GBBC can contact the Cornell Lab of Ornithology at (800) 843-2473 (outside the U.S., call (607) 254-2473), or Audubon at [email protected] or (202) 861-2242, Ext 3050.

The Great Backyard Bird Count is made possible, in part, by support from Wild Birds Unlimited.

We’ve Been Blogged

To my knowledge, Dr. Gregory Simpson is the very first person who has ever devoted an entire blog post to our site! You can read what he wrote here!

Here’s an excerpt of what he said:

simple science projects that allow your child to begin building basic skills in

-developing scientific hypotheses (a major problem in the way we teach science-we’ll talk about this more in a later blog)

-planning and performing an experiment (necessary in practically all data driven professions)

-observation and recording results (from basic scientists to health care professionals, technicians, nurses, physicians)

-analyzing results and drawing conclusions, are in demand and can help in getting over the first step that many parents are fearful of.

What he described is what our projects aim to accomplish with your children. Thanks Dr. Simpson!

Science Project Customer Comments

We’d like to share a few of the comments we’ve received over the last few months from our 24 Hour Science Project customers.

I would first like to say that I am quite surprised you answered my email. I did not really expect you to. When I originally wrote to you, it was Tuesday evening and my daughter’s project was due on Thursday. We are not typically the type to wait until the last minute. Certain circumstances forced us into that predicament. We did Undercover Sneeze and it was really easy and we actually had fun doing the experiment. – DD

My class won 1st place in our school-wide science board fair!! Yes, I purchased the 24 Hour Science Projects on a Sunday evening. We conducted the class experiment on Monday, set the board and journals up on Tuesday/Wednesday, submitted it to the “faire” on Thursday, and …..WON! Now, we go District-wide. Thank you so much for this fabulous site and such a great variety of student-friendly projects. – Trish

You know my son won first place last year and I am very competitive so we are out to redeem his title. – Christine (using the projects for the second year!)

We are going to do the egg experiment and beef it up with great drawings of the human cell and discuss all about osmosis. What a great idea. It saved us this year. Thanks so much! – Elisa

As a retired 6th grade teacher I was glad to find this kind of help online for my grandsons. I have 5 grandchildren and three of them need to get ready for science fair projects. – Lorolie

I used your service last year and it was super. – Connie

I purchased the yeast beat from you two years ago, and she won first place. – Mary

I purchased your product to help a developmentally challenged student to complete a required science fail project. The project has been great! – Sue

We followed one of the 24 Hour Science Projects step by step instructions and read a book in regards to the experiment along with the provided websites. We were very pleased and my son was very excited that he made this project happen. He has been chosen to go to the science fair by his teacher. – Sandra

This is our second time with science projects. I am thankful there are people like you out there to help us. I am not really that good on the computer, but we are all learning together! – Daisy

I am loving your site…there are really some great ideas. – Jean

Wow! Thanks for the fast response. As we are on the proverbial single parent time crunch, your fast response was greatly appreciated. – Bob

Your explantations really helped! Jennifer

He got first place in his 1st grade class and 1st place out of all the 1st grade classes – about 75 kids. So thanks! – Rebekah

Interested? Get your free copy of the “Non-Scientist Parent’s Guide to a Science Project” at 24 Hour Science Projects.

IN A HURRY? CLICK HERE TO GET A SCIENCE PROJECT THAT CAN BE FINISHED TOMORROW!

The Scienctific Method – Methodically Explained

easy science projects

The scientific method is a way to ask and find the answer to scientific questions by making observations and doing experiments. Depending on which science book you read, there are either four, five or six steps to the scientific method. (Doesn’t sound very scientific, does it…) For the purpose of this post, we’ve decided to take the average, and explain The Five Steps of the Scientific Method: Observation, Question, Hypothesis, Experimentation, and Results.

Suppose you Observe that your Nintendo DS isn’t working. You’ll ask yourself the Question “What’s wrong with my DS!?” Then you’ll come up with a couple of ideas, or Hypotheses: The battery could be dead, the game could be dirty, or maybe the baby dropped it into the toilet. So you’ll Experiment – you check the battery, take out the game and blow out the dust, then check for signs of dried Cheerios and wet spots. These experiments will hopefully lead you to the Result, and you’ll know why your DS wasn’t working.

When you put it this way, it really isn’t very complicated.

A science project doesn’t have to be complicated, either. It’s important to remember, however, that if you’re doing a science project that is an experiment, you must follow the scientific method. And that’s where the hard part comes in. The hardest part about doing a good project is actually finding a good project. Many of the science projects online are demonstrations and aren’t really experiments.

That’s where we come in. We have five science project guides, each with an experiment that follows the scientific method. You can see them at 24 Hour Science Projects. Our Hypothesis is that you’ll Observe that our Experiments will give you great science project Results – no Question about it!

Get your free copy of the “Non-Scientist Parent’s Guide to a Science Project” at 24 Hour Science Projects.

SO CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED ON THE FASTEST SCIENCE PROJECT YOU’VE EVER DONE!