MWV Middle School Science Project : Overview

Objectives: The student will design and conduct an independent science project. Throughout the project, the student will demonstrate proficiency with specific science concepts, processes, and skills. The student will create a display that presents the project. The student will be prepared to answer questions about their project.
A student who would like to enter their project in the MWV Regional Science Fair may do so with their teacher’s recommendation.

Timeline:

November, 2008 - Plan and design project. Post ideas and designs to the wiki
December, 2008 - Complete project work (observations, experiment, survey, etc.). Post your data and journal entries.
January, 2009 - Write up of results (analysis and conclusions), create project display. Post your results. Add any necessary multimedia.
February, 2009 - Display and present project at local school / team level.

Students who are interested are encouraged to make revisions and submit their projects to the Mount Washington Valley Science Fair. The fair is scheduled for Tuesday, May 14th, 2008.


Project Summary:

The project should follow the processes of the “Scientific Method”. While science does not always follow this exact sequence, it may be helpful to proceed in this order.

  1. Brainstorm curiosities and questions. Select an area to focus upon.
  2. Develop a question to investigate.
  3. Research the question and its variables to gain background knowledge.
  4. Based upon the research findings, determine a new strand of the research question for which there is limited knowledge. This will become the experiment question.
  5. Define the experiment variables and question, making sure it is a “testable question”.
  6. Formulate a “hypothesis” that predicts the outcomes of the experiment.
  7. Design a controlled experiment that tests the question by manipulating the variables.
  8. Conduct the experiment and record the results. Data could include observations,
  9. images, and measurements.
  10. Summarize and analyze the results (tables & graphs), looking for patterns or trends.
  11. Interpret the data and determine the level of support for the hypothesis.
  12. Answer the experiment question (if possible) and draw conclusions.
  13. Create a report of the experiment design, results, and conclusions.
  14. Create an abstract about the experiment.
  15. Create a display about the project and present the information to others.