Winning science project ideas are a hard thing to find for most parents. I once proposed a project to our principal entitled, “Do Science Projects cause maternal insanity?” We have four boys, and throughout middle and elementary school, they were required to enter the school science fair. At first, each experiment was a huge struggle. But over the years, we figured out how to do a science project that worked, wasn’t expensive, didn’t require months to complete, and that conformed to the strict science fair guidelines. We also found that science projects really could be fun! That was a novel idea to us…
As you search for science project ideas, here are some hints to help you choose a winning science project for your child:
1. Know your science fair guidelines. What kind of project does your science fair require? There are five kinds: investigative (experimental), demonstration, research, models, and collections. (For more detailed information on types of science projects, get a FREE Parent’s Guide to a Science Project at www.24hourscienceprojects.com).
Are there other restrictions? Can you use food, or animals? Does your child have to redo or recreate the project in front of the judge?
2. Brainstorm. After you know all the specifics for your science fair, make a list if project ideas that meet the requirements. Try to get projects with a variety of science topics. You may want to do this before your child gets involved, so you won’t have to say “No – not suitable” so many times.
3. Narrow it down. Look through your list of projects, and eliminate the ones that look too complicated or hard to do. Remember, your child is supposed to do the project with your assistance only.
Check the list of supplies. Are they readily available? Can you afford them?
Do you have enough time to complete the project? If the science project is due next week, you don’t have time to study the long term effect of anything.
Make sure the science project is on your child’s level. He or she should be able to get a good grasp of the scientific basics. Science projects for third graders probably shouldn’t involve advanced physics.
4. Finally, let your child choose the science project idea that he or she likes the best – and you’ve got a winner.
P.S. Get your FREE Parent’s Guide to a Science Project here. We’ll point you in the direction of some winning science project ideas!