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NHPM Science Fair  

Resources to help students: choose science fair experiments, complete background research on their topics, and find general information about the process.
Last Updated: Sep 19, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates
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Welcome to the Science Fair Resource Guide


Research Resources


Search DESTINY for science experiment books, just ask a Librarian if you need help in finding the books on the shelves! Also search for books by topic for background research.


See your librarian if you need the user name and password for home use for these databases!

 Use this database for experiments AND background research.





Displaying Your Project

Display Boards

Display Tips Creating your board, the do's and don'ts

How to Create a Winning Display Board  Tips for your board and your oral presentation.


Create a Graph
If you don’t have access to a spreadsheet program, don’t worry! At this site, you can enter your data, choose a graph type, and print it out.

Handling Data - Representing Data
Learn how to show data with charts and graphs. (From the Children's BBC Bitesize page for KS3.)

Interactivate: Pie Chart
Get practice at creating and changing a pie chart and other charts. (From the Computational Science Education Reference Desk (CSERD), a Pathways project of the National Science Digital Library (NSDL).)



Scientific Method

What are the steps in the scientific method? The scientific method has six steps:

  • Step 1: State a problem or ask a question.
  • Step 2: Gather background information.
  • Step 3: Form a hypothesis.
  • Step 4: Design and perform an experiment.
  • Step 5: Draw a conclusion.
  • Step 6: Report the results.

Scientific Method glossary from "Experiment Central"


Science Fair Projects

Finding an idea for your project can be the hardest part, but the following sites are great places to start to look for topic ideas! If you need help deciding what type of project you want to do, look at these websites first. They’ll show you ways to think about the topics that interest you.

All Science Fair Projects

Find hundreds of projects under Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Earth Sciences, and Engineering. Browse through the projects, or use the search engine to find a specific topic and complete instructions.

Battery Projects

Science experiments relating to batteries and battery chemistry.

Branches of Science 

Science fair topics organized by branches of science.

Bug Info: Science Fair Project Suggestions
Love bugs? BugInfo describes several projects and explains how to conduct them.

Superb advice for every aspect of a science fair project: topic ideas, research, data recording, display making, and more! Everything is presented in a step-by-step guide. There are also project ideas for all grade levels.

DragonflyTV's Science Fair Page
Try the Super Science Spinner to find a project idea, or scroll down to the list of projects. You’ll see each project described, with a few suggestions on how you can turn this idea into a brand new project that’s all your own. - Science Fair Project Ideas
Offers many science fair project ideas involving the solar system, weather, agriculture, and mathematics.

Exploratorium: The Science Explorer
"Get Messy, Get Airborne, Get Loud, Get Shocked! Try These Activities." From blowing, bouncing, bursting bubbles to dramatic static, this site tells you what you need, what to do, as well as explaining what's going on.

FactMonster: Science Fair Projects :Find out about the scientific method, where it came from, and why you need to use it!

Fun Science Gallery: Experiments in Electrochemistry
Learn to measure electrical conductivity and make several kinds of battery. (Did you know you can get electricity from a lemon?) Good projects if you like to work with your hands and build things.

MadSci Network Experiments
"Science should be fun…science should be edible…" Not all of these projects are edible, but don’t worry – they warn you which ones aren’t, and also which ones should have an adult present. Categories covered are: Astronomy, Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Earth Sciences, Mathematics, and Physics.

Neuroscience for Kids: Experiments and Activities
Can your eyes deceive you? Do you remember your dreams? Can you build a model of the nervous system? Dr. Chudler publishes a long list of games and creative ideas for Neuroscience science fair projects. Projects are good for grades 3-12.

Parenting Teens: Project Ideas for Science Fairs
A lot of variety in this collection of ideas presented as specific topics, but without telling you how to do them. With a little creativity, you should find it easy to turn one of these topic ideas into a project of your own!

Science Buddies Science Fair Project Ideas
The Topic Selection Wizard will help ask you enough questions to decide what kind of science you’ll most enjoy doing. An excellent aid!

Science Fair Central: Project Ideas
"Remember, your science fair project should start with a question." Here are some questions that could make great science fair projects. The topics include "Animals and Insects," "Food and Our Bodies," and "Plants and Gardening," and several Earth Science categories.

Science Fair Projects World

A collection of hundreds of free illustrated Science Fair Projects ideas and Science Project Experiments. All the projects are Illustrated with high-quality diagrams and easy to follow instructions.

USGS Science Fair Ideas
The U.S. Geological Survey provides a fun list of project ideas for studying earthquakes and other types of ground movement. You can also find instructions for building an earthquake simulator.



Getting Started

Before you get started, you probably need to know more about what a science fair or project is all about. Of course, your teacher can tell you more about the science fair at NHPM, but the sites on this page can explain what science fairs are all about.

Discovery Channel School: Science Fair Central
"A science project is like a mystery in which you are the detective searching for answers." Janice VanCleave helps you turn from science gumshoe to super sleuth and explains each step, from research to presentation.

Experimental Science Projects: An Introductory Level Guide
Not sure how to plan your project? Peter Macinnis covers every step. Also, scroll to the bottom and find a long list of topic ideas.

Science Fair Primer
Learn here how to do many important steps in your project, from developing a purpose and designing an experiment, to analyzing your data and writing a research report.

Science Project Guidelines
Having judged science fairs for many years, Kennedy Space Center scientist Elizabeth Stryjewski knows the common mistakes students make in their science investigations.

Science Fair Project Resource Guide

If you’ve never done a science fair project before, DON’T PANIC! The IPL’s Science Fair Project Resource Guide will help you through the whole project by guiding you to a variety of excellent web resources.

A Student’s Guide
Carefully explains how to do a science project and why they are important.


Basic Rules for a Successful Science Fair Project

1.  Time management

2.  Become familiar with the guidelines and requirements from the very beginning

3.  Pick a subject that is very interesting to you.

4.  Think about a testable question rather than a demonstration.

5.  Under the purpose or background section, include information that you already know about your subject and tell the readers why you chose the project.  This is where much of your research will be used.

6.  In the question section, think like a scientist!  They are interested in what they are studying and are curious to know the answers to questions they are researching.  Keep your question simple!

7.  As soon as you come up with a testable question, you will have a hypothesis (prediction) about what the results will be from your testing.  Write it down immediately but be prepared to tweak it as you conduct your research and experiment.

8.  Make sure you have all the materials you will need before you start.  Keep good notes each step of the way so that you can use that when recording your method.

9.  Results or data:  Include as many visuals as possible -- charts, graphs, photos, etc. But don't give your final thoughts on your question just yet.  Save that for the next part -- THE CONCLUSION!

10.  Now you finally have the opportunity to tell your readers what you found out from the experiment or how you interpret your data.  Focus on what you learned about your original question and hypothesis.

(Source: )


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