The Beach Is A Cool Science Experiment

cool science experimentsI was sitting on  the beach the other day …watching all the activity going on around, remembering how much fun my kids had and for that matter the beach days I had as a kid when visiting my grandmother in Florida, and it occurred to me what I seeing was fun and  pretty cool science experiments going on everywhere I looked!

The best thing was the kids, and parents, were just having fun, but were using their understanding of science and how a good experiment works, and were not even aware that is what they were doing?

  1. Where you set up and put your stuff totally depends on the tides and understanding how far it came up yesterday, the weather patterns of today.
  2. When you jump waves, or use your boogie board, it is one massive experiment to learn to judge the best time to jump or ride the wave in. As the day goes on, from your “experiment” you get better at it!
  3. Building a sand castle, or a wall, or anything in the sand is a lesson in architecture principles and the art of a good foundation. Nobody tells the kids to shore up the bottom, they figure it out.  Have you ever listened to the chatter amongst kids as they work together on one of those things?  Try this,  lets do that..  such cool science experiments they don’t even know they are doing!
  4. All it takes is one storm to see what erosion can do, the beach near me has dunes half the size of two years ago due to huge storms.  The signs about the importance of beach grass to the dunes is living example of science!
  5. Even without the storm just standing in one place in the water shows you eroision  as your feet sink deeper and the sand move around you.s
  6. We learn about the difference between onshore and ocean breezes and why we prefer the ocean breeze… yes it is cooler, but it also keeps the black biting flies away!
  7. Once July comes the sea nettles show up which is a whole new topic to learn about, but in the meantime you can find all sorts of little creatures and the shells of creatures and gain some more insight.
  8. Hydration becomes the topic of converstaion and you feel your body needing water and how fast it loses it in the heat. I don;t know about you but youy experiment with bringing frozen watr bottle, water coolers filled with ice, should you use sugar drinks or not all become science experiments.
  9. Reflection of light becomes a topic to learn about for a couple of things, that famous sunburn on the back of your legs from the water, how hot the sand gets, wearing light colors and which umbrellas keeps the sun out the best.
  10. Finally, if you are lucky you will get to watch some dolphins swim up and down the shoreline, and that is just plain cool.

 

There are some cool science experiments  that you could use at home this summer just as a fun activity. Science really is going on all around you, and kids really are interested!

Try these demonstration project ideas,

for a quick, summer project that can be done in a day….

Sixth Grade Science Project Guides on the Internet

When trying to find the perfect science project guide for your 6th grader, the internet is an amazing resource.  It’s important to find a project that is challenging, educational, but also grade level appropriate and interesting for your student.  Searching the internet allows for the type of specificity that will help you find a science project that balances all of these crucial elements. 

You can search for projects with more specific search criteria like their grade level, or the subject matter, once you have decided what type of project your child would like to attempt. For example, “6th grade science project ideas, butterflies.” This should hopefully yield plenty of results. It’s important to narrow your results with criteria like your child’s grade level, age, or a subject matter so that you can be sure you are getting results that will be useful to you. 

 If your student isn’t exactly sure what subject matter they want to do a project on, it might be wise to browse an online database of 6th grade science projects, like those found at http://www.akronlibrary.org/DBS/SFDB/Default.aspx or http://www.youth.net/nsrc/sci/sci.index.html, which you can look through by grade level or subject area. Databases like these are full of ideas and instructions, and are easier to use than just a simple general search that might bring you to an unreliable site. Another great resource for one-stop 6th grade science project ideas are the free guides found at http://www.middle-school-science-projects.com/guide.pdf

For your science experiment

check out 24 Hour Science Projects!

Creating an Experiment from a Model, or Demonstration

Elementary and middle school science projects almost always have to be done in the form of an experiment. The trouble for most students is that most of the time, projects that are on the internet or in books are either demonstrations or models. Since they don’t follow the scientific method, neither of these meet the qualifications of the school science fair.

The good news is that many times, a model can be used in an experiment, and variables can be added to a demonstration, so that it can be one, too. Here are five examples of projects that are modified to become an experiment.

– How hot can a solar heater get? – First of all, finding the answer to this question may result in a fire! Make it an experiment by testing two different solar heater models. Construct two identical heaters, one with a glass front, and the other with a plexiglass front. (The instructions are live here.) Measure the temperature over several days, and see which one got the hottest.

– How can you make a potato canon? – This is a fun activity, and it demonstrates how cool science can be, but it doesn’t test anything. How can you turn it into an experiment? Vary the trajectory, and ask, “At which angle will a potato canon launch a potato the farthest?”

– What happens when you mix chalk and lemon juice? – Studying acids and bases is fascinating, but there are no variables – so it’s not an experiment. Change it up. Soak pieces of chalk in water, a basic solution, and an acid, and note the variance in the weight.

– What happens when bean seeds germinate? – This is a great lesson, but what are kids comparing? Turn it into an experiment by testing “At which temperature do bean seeds germinate the best?” Use different watt bulbs to vary the temperature.

– How do bones change when soaked in vinegar? – This is close to an experiment, but the project I saw didn’t have a way to measure the change. The results of a true experiment must be measurable. Come up with a weigh to measure the amount of weight the bones can support before breaking, and you may just win your middle school science fair.

Remember, an experiment is a test of the relationship between two variables that have measurable results that can be replicated. It amazes me that reputable science publications will label any sort of science activity as an experiment. It doesn’t matter that you’re still in middle school type of project isn’t right. You can do better than ‘real’ scientists! Turn a ‘non-experiments’ into middle school projects that will amaze judges, your teachers – and yourself!

If you’re looking for a ready made experiment, get one of our Science Project guides. They’ll take you step by step through the experiments, all of which follow the scientific method.

Don’t wait! Start today and finish tomorrow: 24 Hour Science Projects!

At a Glance – All of our Science Fair Topics

People often ask me for an entire list of all the science fair topics we have. Here’s a list of each project topic, and along with a link where you can get instructions on how to get the topic turned into something ready for your science fair!

24 Hour Science Fair Topics:
demonstration topic
• Does the shape of ice affect melting time?
• Does covering the mouth really help prevent the spread of germs?
• Which toilet tissue is most biodegradable?
• How does salt affect the boiling point of water?
• Which citrus fruit has the most Vitamin C?

These experiments are available here: 24 Hour Science Projects

Weekend Science Fair Topics: weekend science project topic
• Take the shell off an egg without boiling, and find out if water will go through the membrane.
• Use toy cars to find out about friction!
• Are two ears better than one? Get a group of friends to find out the answer.
• Which brand cereal stays crunchy longest? You’ll love this tasty experiment.
• Feeling a bit warm? Which type of insulation works best?

Turn these topics into experiments here: Weekend Science Projects

Watch This! Science Project Topics:
vitamin c topic
• Demonstrate that yeast is alive by watching it blow up balloons!
• Show how one Lego sinks, and another one floats in this amazing lesson on density.
• Show off how static electricity works – you’ll make aluminum foil dance!
• Prove that chemical reactions can be sped up – right in front of your friends.
• Make oil and water mix.

Get these demonstration science fair project here Watch This! Science Project Topics.

Middle School Science Project Topics:
chemistry topic
• Experiment to find the effect different hair products has on hair.
• Analyze soil, then test its water carrying capacity.
• Find out what makes yeast grow the best.
• Test and see if the amount of Vitamin C in juice diminishes over time.
• Make a solar heater from inexpensive (or recycled!) products.

Get all five Middle School Science Project Topics.

P.S. Each of our Science Fair Topics are great for the science fair. They’re educational, affordable, and fun! AND they can all be finished by this time tomorrow!

They’re LIVE – Middle School Science Projects!

We’re happy to report that Middle School Science Projects are now live! As you know, we’ve been working like – well – mad scientists at our house, and we can’t wait for you to choose your favorite project and start experimenting!soil science project

Here are the five projects in the Middle School Science Project package:

• Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow – Experiment to find the effect different hair products has on hair. You can test different conditioners or different ways to color hair. Most of the supplies for this project are as close your bathroom – and the head on your head!

• “C” You Later – This project teaches you how to make an indicator, and then use it to see if the amount of Vitamin C in juice diminishes over time. There are a ton of variations for this science project, and we tell you about them in the guide. This project has already won awards at science fairs.

• Yeast – Rising to the Occasion – Find out what makes yeast grow the best. Sugar, wheat, or maybe dog food!? This easy experiment always is amazing to do – and sharing it makes it even more fun. Hint: It would make a wonderful video to go along with your science board.

• Cheap Heats – You’ll get plans on how to make a solar heater from inexpensive or free products. We actually made one version of this project for zero dollars – scavenging in our attic and recycling bin for supplies! It was loads of fun to do, and we were warmed by the results.

• The Dirt on Dirt – Dig up some soil from your yard, analyze it, then test its water carrying capacity. We loved doing this earth science project! To do it, you only need dirt, water, nylon stockings, one tin can and some jars. We learned a ton doing the research for this project – and you will too!

But you shouldn’t take our word for it. Grab your copy of Middle School Science Projects today and get started on your next science experiment.

P.S. You can also find out how to get five MORE science project guides – a bargain if there ever was one.

Cosmetology Science Experiment

Earlier this week I talked about our new science project about hair. I suppose, since we are scientists, that I need to call it a Cosmetology Science Experiment. Anyhow – getting this project just right has been about as difficult as getting the right hair cut for my boys. But it’s been fun! And we’ve learned all sorts of things along the way.Cosmetology Science Experiment

For example, we had a heck of a time getting the hair the exact length we needed it. I mean, hair is little, tiny, and hard to grasp. We figured out a way – quite by accident – to get each strand the perfect length. Our other discovery is finding out what sort of stuff is in cosmetology products. We have boys, and they don’t exactly use anything on their hair other than shampoo – and sometimes I have to remind them to use that! Anyhow, I didn’t know about peroxide and lemon juice and the difference between highlighting and stripping color. Thanks to some interviews with real cosmetologists, I’m much better informed.

Of course, we have more fun middle school projects up our sleeve. Right now my kitchen has a slight smell of sour milk and our cabinets are splattered with purple cabbage juice. I’ve got orange pulp in my fingernails, and the taste of club soda in my mouth. (I know, you’re not supposed to taste any of the experiments!)

But we’re sailing toward getting this package of products done! I can’t wait.

P.S. If you need a science project now, get our free Parent’s Guide to a Science Project at 24 Hour Science Projects.com!

Science Project About Hair – Our Hair Raising Fun…

hair science projectOur house has turned into a laboratory of sorts; we’re getting the new Middle School Science Projects ready to roll. You can see some of the things we’re using to the right.

One of the things we’re working on today is our new science project about hair. In the experiment, we’re measuring the strength of hair after it’s been treated with various types of hair products. To do this, we had to find a way to hang strands of hair. The first attempt was to simply tie a knot. That was NOT easy, and after I tried for fifteen minutes, we decided it was too impractical to think that a middle schooler would be able to do it.

So then we thought about tape. First, I used medical tape, because it’s white and you can write on it – important to keep up with the variables. But the medical tape didn’t hold the hair; it just slipped out. Regular cellophane tape wasn’t successful either. I almost gave up, but we finally found a great solution. You’ll have to get the middle school guide to find out!

Experimenting before the science experiment is an important part of our science. We’ll have all the kinks worked out of the hair project (pun intended!) when it is published. Our goal is to take the guesswork out for families, so that they have a step by step list for a cool science project that works!

WANT TO GET STARTED ON A FAST AND GREAT SCIENCE PROJECT? CLICK HERE!

P.S. We’re kicking around titles for our science project about hair – “Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow”, “Splitting Hairs”, “Hair Conditioning”, and other less catchy attempts. Leave a comment below if you have any ideas.

Science Fair Topics for Middle School Projects

science fair topics for middle school

We’re getting ready to roll out a whole new set of science project with science fair topics that are perfect for middle school! In fact, the projects are called Middle School Science Projects. We’ll be doing some cool experiments, and one demonstration. Here are the topics we have planned:

1. How do different hair products affect the strength of hair. Girls are especially interested in doing a science project about hair. In this project, we treat hair, then test its strength.

2. Does the amount of Vitamin C in Orange juice change over time? This is a slightly more advanced version of our popular Vitamin ‘C’itrus’ project.

3. What liquid is best for growing beans. This experiment involves pH and hydroponics, and you get to make your own litmus paper.

4. What makes yeast grow best? We have another project with yeast as the science fair topic, but its a demonstration. We’re releasing this because so many of our students have asked for a science experiment about yeast.

5. This one is a demonstration/model. We’ll be building a solar heater with cans and a window frame. I plan on using it in our upstairs bathroom, which currently is unheated!

I’m very excited about these projects!! Stay tuned for more information!

 

P.S. You don’t have to wait for the new package. Get a free science project guide here.

WANT 5 FAST AND EASY SCIENCE PROJECTS?! CLICK HERE!

Easy Science Projects – Guest Author

Easy science projects with elementary kids aren’t always done for the science fair. Sometimes, you’re just looking for something for fun. Here is a guest writer to share some easy science project ideas that you probably can’t take to the fair, but that are a whole lot of fun!

If you do need an easy science project for school, check out 24 Hour Science Projects.

Most parents and especially homeschoolers are always on the lookout for easy science fair projects to do with the kids. Here is one of our very easy science fair projects to do with the kids. In this project you are going to look at how ships float.

Simple boats such as rafts float because they are made of material that is lighter than the water. Usually materials such as light wood or reeds that are less dense than water are used.

Heave boats works differently as they float because of the upthrust of the water that occurs because of them pushing on the water. The upthrust is their pushing force. By putting something on the water and letting it go, you will see that it is pushing the liquid out of the way. The further it goes the more water it pushes up. Now, when this upthrust becomes the same as the objects weight, the object will float. This is the principle uses for boats.

Now, here is a very simple experiment to test upthrust:

What you will need for your project:

2 polystyrene blocks, one double the size of the other
A tank or a bowl of water
A wooden block
A Marble

Method for this easy science fair project to do with the kids:

Place the two polystyrene blocks in the water
Notice that they float because they are made of very light material
So, for them to float only a small amount of upthrust is needed
Now you can try and push them under the water
You should be able to feel the upthrust pushing back
Place the wooden block in and you will notice that it floats deeper in the water because it is heavier or denser than the polystyrene blocks
Now drop the marble in, you will notice that it sinks immediately as the upthrust is not enough to keep it floating

When doing a project such as this, remember to make notes of all your steps and to take photos for your display. It is also important to make use of the proper scientific method to ensure you do a good project.

In this project, what would you say is your hypothesis?
Which part of this experiment is your control?
How would you describe your method?

These are some of the things you will have to know in order to do a winning science fair project. Even easy science fair projects to do with the kids, needs to adhere to this as they have to learn from the very beginning to do it correct.

The next easy science fair project to do with the kids..

Making use of the upthrust with a hollow hull

What you need for this experiment:

A pair of scissors
Kitchen foil about 20cm X 15cm
Kitchen paper towels
The same tank of water
Marbles

How to do this easy science fair project:

First of all place the flat piece of kitchen foil in the tank
Give it a slight push and notice that it sinks with the slightest push because it does not replace a lot of water, so the upthrust in minimal
Remove the foil from the water and carefully dry it with the kitchen paper without tearing it
Now you have to carefully, without tearing the foil, model it into a simple boat shape with your fingers
Place your boat in the water
What happens?
Why does it happen?
Now start filling your boat with marbles, as your cargo
What happens now?
Why does it happen?
How many marbles can you place in your boat before it sinks?
Why does it eventually sink?

In answering these questions, think of the experiment above. Now you have demonstrated how a boat works. Even though it is made of metal, it is filled with a lot of air and this creates enough upthrust to make it float. If the boat is overloaded though, it will eventually sink.

These is only two very simple examples of Easy Science Fair Projects To Do with kids, working with boats.

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.