The winning science fair projects are the ones created by students. However, narrowing down a topic is quite overwhelming to students. Take the pressure off students by engaging them in a few activities to limit the number of science fair ideas.
Science Fair Ideas
Give a brief overview of the main science categories; biology, chemistry, physics, astronomy, and geology. These five branches of science have countless possibilities to research. First step is for students to brainstorm science fair topics. Have students write biology,chemistry,physics, astronomy, or geology in the center of a large piece of paper.
Next, the teacher divides students based on their science selection. Direct students to talk about the different ideas related to the category. After about 15 minutes of sharing, students will do an individual brainstorming session.
Students will brainstorm ideas related to their own idea or one generated during the group discussion. Students will write their ideas on the large piece of paper. After the session, students will begin the ask questions activity.
Science Fair Project Questions
After the main idea is chosen, it is time to narrow the topic. The best strategy is to begin asking questions. Begin the activity with students writing their main idea at the top of a page. Next, put a timer on for approximately fifteen minutes. For the selected time, instruct students to write as many questions related to the main idea. Students are not to filter the questions, rather just write for the allotted time.
Next, students take a break before deciding on a science project. After the break, students read all the questions. The second step is for them to reread the questions and cross out any questions that don't make sense or are not interesting to them. Thirdly, students reread again and decide on their top three favourite questions. Research is the final step before a topic is selected.
Science Topics to Research
Students write the three questions generated in the ask question activity on separate pieces of paper. They begin researching each question via books, Internet, and media. The purpose of the research is to decide if the project idea is worth investigating. Some questions will not be doable because the project is too vast. Time, expense, and equipment required for the project are some of the obstacles that need to be considered before choosing the project topic.
After the research, students must choose only one topic. However, if none are suitable, students should begin the process again at the question stage or the brainstorming stage. It is important for students to choose an idea that will stimulate and engage them during the investigation process.
Best way for students to choose a winning experiment is to brainstorm science topics, ask many questions, and finally do the research. Student-created science fair projects are the best since they engage the student in the learning process.