11 March 2009

help for the budding scientist

Earlier this week I received the following email from a future paleontologist, Adrienne:

Hey, Andie, I have to do a science fair experiment... the kind where you have to answer a question like, "What different fruits and veggies have more vitamin C?" (That's an example, I did it in 5th grade (2nd place!))
Anyway, I have been searching the interweb and have been so far coming up blank. I was wondering if you guys had any ideas, anything that you remember possibly doing?

We never had science fairs at my school, so I have no suggestions for young Adrienne. But you, dear readers -- any ideas? If so, please comment away


Chris Clarke said...

This site seems to have some science-fair-able techniques: http://sciencesathome.110mb.com/vitCdetection/vitCdetection.html

Anonymous said...

I had two favorite Science Fair projects. (Granted, neither were big winners, but I'm also not very good at presentations, so I'm sure you could do better.)
First, I did an experiment to see what products worked best on rust by making a batch of equally-rusty nails, and then soaking them in different products for a month, checking periodically. (FYI, my grandmother's candidate, ketchup, won over all my tested expensive chemical compounds.)
My classmates' favorite though was my comparative analysis of different brands of microwave popcorn, with criteria ranging from %kernels popped to blind-sample testing.
Well, I don't know if either of those are useful, but I just thought I'd help keep the ball rolling, as it were. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

My niece used this site:


We love it, (and they're free) so good luck!

Anonymous said...

One project we did when my kids were in school was to compare clothing washing powders. Pieces of material were stained with the same liquids - juice, coffee, tea, for example. We collected samples of different powders (collected from neighbors and friends). All material samples were soaked. Results tabulated. Then washed. Results tabulated. It wasn't the most expensive product that did the best job. Hope this helps!

Spencer said...

I admittedly have no advice (but now that you mention it, I DO have a sore back from 10A...).

Keep on dreaming Adrienne!


michael said...

I personally like this one,
which is about extracting onion DNA which can then be photographed or even seen by the naked eye, and if you suggest you might then be putting the onion DNA into a tomatto, all the better.