DEWEY ELEMENTARY SCIENCE FAIR
All projects due on or before Jan. 7th, 2014 to their science or homeroom
teacher.Students may turn them in before Christmas Break if they are prepared
and have been approved to do so by the 5th grade science teacher.
Judging is currently scheduled for Thursday January 9th, 2014.
Judging date may change
All projects will be set up in the Large Gymnasium.
Winners will be announced sometime during the week of January 13 th, 2014.
They may have forms to fill out and get back to the science teacher quickly after winning to
compete at the District Fair Level.
The front office will be selling trifold boards as we get closer to the science fair. Be sure to buy
yours quickly as they may sell out.
Boards should not have the student’s names on the front side of the board. Names and grades/
homeroom teachers can be written on the back of the board.
Use this packet to help guide your student through the Science Fair! 5th grade
has a timeline they are expected to stick to. They should NOT work ahead to
ensure they receive the most points on their assignments. There will be a
weekly grade for participating in the science fair and for being on schedule
according to the science teacher’s timeline.
Mrs. Henley’s email (5 grade science) :firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Henley’s timeline and resources:
http://henley.pbworks.com/ and click on the SCIENCE FAIR INFO link
***Be sure to complete and have child hand back in the signed form at the back of this packet!
PARENT/ STUDENT INFORMATION PACKET
What a science project is: OVERVIEW
A science project is when a student asks a question about the world around them, researches that question and
makes an educated hypothesis about that question. The student then uses prior and obtained knowledge to create
a procedure that can test their hypothesis. The student then follows that procedure to perform their experiment
while collecting data. Each experiment is expected to be conducted atleast 3 times to make sure the data the
student is collecting is accurate. Data cannot be ignored or erased. Mistakes and being “wrong” is an important
part of the scientific method. If a mistake is made, points are not deducted, but the student must be able to
explain the mistakes and how they could be used or corrected in the future. All data from (a minimal of 3
experiments) is put into charts and graphs and interpreted into a formal conclusion. In the conclusion, a student
determines if his/her hypothesis is correct or not and proves it with the data from their experiment.
Science displays are put together representing all the steps that were followed (listed above). The actual
experiments are not to be brought to school. Displays are to be put on Trifolds only and must stand up on their
own. Names are to be put on the BACK of the trifold, and not the front.
What headings must be on the board or display mentioned above.
Title of the Project
The Problem (also known as the question)
Research—tell us information we need to know about the topic in advance. Information is found by
researching the problem/question.
Hypothesis (a testable statement written as an if/then sentence).
Procedure (also known as Experimental Design.)
a. Subheadings: Should include materials needed and safety precautions.(above the procedure)
b. Step by step instructions written in short simple sentences. These sentences are numbered and
Experiment (Photographs which show the experiment. If pictures cannot be taken, they should be drawn.
Pictures which are drawn should demonstrate what was done in the experiment.)
Data: Data Tables, charts and graphs.
Conclusion (A paragraph or more where the student rejects or supports their original hypothesis and uses
data to support their decision).
Academic Vocabulary that should be included on the trifold
Independent Variable - This is the one thing that the scientist changes in an experiment. He knows that his
varying results are due to this change.
Constant/ Controlled Variables– Constants are all the variables that remain the same throughout your
experiment. Since you are only allowed to change one thing (the independent variable), the student must
make sure that all the other variables in the procedure are constants (the same).
Dependent Variable–The results. What the scientist is choosing to observe or measure in his/her
Control group –This is the normal group. In a science project, we change one thing to see how our results
might change or be altered in comparison to what is normal.
What a science project is not:
Researching a science concept online or at home and writing a report about it.
Following step by step instructions printed in a library book or a science kit bought on line. It is okay to get
ideas from library books and materials online, but students need to determine for themselves what steps
need to be taken to test their hypothesis.
An experiment that is only done once.
Changing more than one variable at a time. This leads to confusing results and there is no way to
accurately create a conclusion.
Models will not be accepted, unless they perform an experiment or actively show a concept.
*students may not use explosives or harm animals in their scientific investigations
Conduct an experiment over your own ideas or use one of our suggestions on this sheet:
What properties of liquids allow some liquids to mix, but others to separate? (find out what makes some mix and others not).
Can I create objects that would change the size and shape of a bubble? Could I create a soap bubble bigger than a dog? (find out
how this happens!)
What is making a zip lock bag explode when I add vinegar and baking soda? What is making a balloon inflate that is attached to a
soda bottle if baking soda and vinegar are inside? (find out what happens and why!)
Why are soap bubbles so colorful and how could I see the colors better? (research making a bubble observatory and white light!)
Can I make a rainbow by spraying water? (how does this happen and what are we seeing?)
Can I use chromatography to determine which pen wrote something? (find out how chromatography works, what it is telling
scientists, and how to create your own experiments).
How could a balloon move a soda can without touching it? (research static electricity… find out if bigger or smaller balloons work
better… be able to explain HOW this is all happening.)
Can I create a song by cutting PVC pipes to different lengths? (research why they have different pitches and what is creating the
Do string telephones with Styrofoam cups really work? (research what is making them work. Can you try different materials that
might make them work better or worse?)
How do scientists use fingerprints to solve crimes? (research fingerprinting, how to create fingerprints at home, and develop your
own experiment to see if you can identify a person’s fingerprint out of many distractor fingerprints).
Why do some fruits turn brown after they are left out? (research what this process is called, how it happens, and form an
experiment to determine which foods or fruits are more prone to this “browning” process.*there is a vocab word for this!)
What is the longest straw that I can create while still being able to drink a liquid from it? (Research how straws work, what the
longest one is made, and create an experiment to determine straws at different lengths and how well they work.)
How does Inertia work? (research inertia and develop an experiment to determine if the property works and why it works.)
Is it possible to layer different types of liquid on top of one another without them mixing? (Research density and develop and
experiment to try this out. What happens if you layer them in the wrong order? And find out how you know the right order to layer
Is white light really white?
What causes metals to rust and do they rust at different rates? (research this concept and develop your own experiment to
determine how and why this happens).
When determining if objects sink or float, does the temperature of the water matter?
Through which surfaces does sound travel the best? (research the topic and understand why.)
Why would some liquids boil faster than others?
Does the color of a surface affect the temperature of that surface?
What makes sound differ?
What are echos, how are they created, and can you create one without going outside?
Can an object roll farther on different surfaces and why?
Can people tell how many toothpicks are touching them within an 2-3 inch area (with their eyes closed)? Does this change along
their arm, hand, leg, foot? (research nerves and sensitivity and be able to explain WHY this happens.)
25. Am I able to graft 2 plants together? (research grafting,
how it works and which plants would work best and
quickest, and try it!)
26. How quickly could a mouse, lizard, guinea pig learn to
run a maze…. Does this change over time? (research
previous experiments to design your own).
27. Does the color of food/drinks, affect a person’s
reaction to it: (ie. Prediction of flavor, taste, ability to
distinguish flavor, etc.)
28. How do light, air, water and temperature affect
29. Can a plant grow upside down and why?
30. Can your 5 senses be fooled or tricked?
31. Can you make a model of the water cycle to prove that
it occurs? (research the water cycle, conduct an
experiment to create your own enclosed water cycle,
and be sure to keep your vocabulary at grade level.)
32. Can you create a model of how acid rain occurs?
(similar to #1)
33. What all evaporates up with water, if anything? Can
you prove it?
34. How do scientists identify minerals and could you do
35. How do different soils affect plants?
36. Can you create weathering?
37. Can you create air pressure?
38. Does music affect animal behavior?
39. Does the color of food or drinks affect whether or
not we like them?
40. Where are the most germs in your school/home?
41. Does music have an effect on plant growth?
42. Which kind of food do dogs (or any animal) prefer
43. Which paper towel brand is the strongest?
44. What is the best way to keep an ice cube from
45. Can the food we eat affect our heart rate?
46. How effective are child-proof containers and locks.
47. Can background noise levels affect how well we
48. Does acid rain affect the growth of aquatic plants?
49. What is the best way to keep cut flowers fresh the
50. Does the color of light used on plants affect how well
51. What plant fertilizer works best?
52. Does the color of a room affect human behavior?
53. Do athletic students have better lung capacity?
54. What brand of battery lasts the longest?
55. Does the type of potting soil used in planting affect
how fast the plant grows?
56. What type of food allows mold to grow the fastest?
57. Does having worms in soil help plants grow faster?
58. Can plants grow in pots if they are sideways or
59. Does the color of hair affect how much static
electricity it can carry? (test with balloons)
60. How much weight can the surface tension of water
61. Can some people really read someone else's
62. What light brightness makes plants grow the best?
63. Does the color of birdseed affect how much birds
will eat it?
64. Do natural or chemical fertilizers work best?
65. Can mice learn? (you can pick any animal)
66. Can people tell artificial smells from real ones?
67. What brands of bubble gum produce the biggest
68. Does age affect human reaction times?
69. What is the effect of salt on the boiling temperature
70. Does shoe design really affect an athlete's jumping
71. Can you create an optical illusion, how do they work
72. Can you create subliminal messages that influence
73. How quickly do odor gel beads work, and how do
74. Which batteries last the longest?
75. Which toothpaste works the best?
***these are just suggestions. More ideas can be found in library books and online.
***It is important that this is the student’s work and ideas. Students have been told what is expected in
class. Parents and online kits may not be aware of all the expectations being asked of the students.
***Science projects must have taken steps in an experiment. Models and research projects are not
accepted. ** No models of volcanoes accepted.
*** The experiment must be performed three times to assure it has accurate results.
***Students should be able to explain more than “look what happened!” They should understand WHY it
happened and be able to explain that in the conclusion and at the science fair as they represent their
What are you
wanting to find out
about?Written as a
your topic of
does it work?
Why? What is it
made of? What
science concept is
Use a cause and
effect map to
isolate your Ind.
sentence. Must be
Use a tree map
your procedure to
Collect data and
Was the hypothesis right
or wrong.How do you
know (look at the data and
prove it)?Who can use this
information or how could
the info be used? Did you
find any mistakes that
could be corrected?
CAUSE AND EFFECT MAP
POSSIBLE VARIABLE CAUSES (IND. V)
POSSIBLE VARIABLE EFFECTS (Dep. Variable)
MAKING A HYPOTHESIS
**(the one you pick is the
**(all others are constants)
**the one you pick is the
(Dependent variable) It is the
thing you observe/ measure
2. Form a hypothesis: Choose one cause (from the left side of your cause/effect map) and one
effect (from the right side of your cause/effect map) to develop a hypothesis. Turn it into
your educated guess:
The “cause” you chose is your independent variable—the one thing you chose to change. All
the other causes on the left side turn into constants. Things that must stay the same and NOT
The “effect” you chose is your dependent variable—the variable you plan on observing &
You may only change 1 thing in an experiment. The other possible variables you listed on the
cause side must stay constant! A T-chart helps you separate the independent variables,
dependent variable and constants. It also helps you write a good procedure.
Constants should be the same on both
Sides of the T chart. List at least 4
(this is your results. You will not know this
until after your experiment is complete)
REMEMBER! **You will need to perform this 3 times!!! That is 3 sets of Dependent
variables at the bottom of your T-chart!
Do not fill out:
Example of A Site Judge’s Form:
Project Title is listed on the display; appropriate, unique, and interesting.
Display uses language appropriate for grade level, explores appropriate scientific content
and explains using grade level academic vocabulary. Not copied.
Problem/Question heading is listed on the display. It clearly defines what they want to know more about.
Background/Research heading is listed on the display. It gives information about the problem in the student's own words
Hypothesis heading is listed on the display. It is written as a testable statement about the problem in an "if/then" sentence.
Procedure/ Exp. Design &
Procedure heading is listed on the display. Students have listed the materials needed and brainstormed any safety precautions.
The procedure is numbered (1.2.3.) and gives clear, step by step instructions on how to test the hypothesis.
It is obvious that only one variable has been changed in the investigation per trial.
Are photographs or drawings presented on the board showing their investigation
Data tables, charts (and/or) graphs represent the student's findings.
At least 3 trials were performed and data is collected for all trials.
The conclusion states if the student accepts or rejects their hypothesis and why. The student uses
data they collected to support their findings. Conclusions may explain real world application of their findings.
Thouroughness and accuracy
Does the display clearly demonstrate a logical thought process. Is it complete?
Attractiveness of display
Is the display nice and neat. Is it organized well?
Total Points Awarded:
Use the following headings to help organize your display. All headings should be used. *Note the
“problem” is the same thing as a “question”. Every heading should be used!!!
DEWEY ELEMENTARY GUARDIAN CONTRACT:
1. Students will follow the timeline and/or guidelines set by teacher above anything found online,
purchased in a kit, or in a book.
2. It is important that this is student led work. Any copying of published works (including copying
procedures off of purchased kit sets) is a violation of copyright. Students should develop their
own questions, research, hypothesis and procedures in their own words even if a kit is bought.
3. Experiment materials will not be brought to school. Instead, students are to take pictures or
draw pictures that represent what was done for their tri-fold boards.
4. Parents may assist, but should not complete the experiment or trifold for the student.
5. No animals, insects, or living organisms can be harmed in the name of the science project.
6. No explosives, fire, hazardous chemicals, or weapons are to be used in the science project.
7. I recognize that my child is being given 10 weeks to complete this project and is being guided by
his/her science teacher on a weekly basis. My child is also receiving weekly grades on if he/she
is following directions and sticking to the pace of the timeline. Not working on the science
project, working behind, or working ahead may result is undesired grades.
8. If my child wins, they will need to complete paperwork quickly to be eligible to compete at the
9. Max size of the project display is 30in (front to back) by 48 in (wide) by 108 in (high)
Student Printed Name __________________________________ Homeroom ___________________
Student Signature _________________________________________________ attesting “ I will do my
best to follow the guidelines stated above and included in this packet.”
Guardian Contact (Printed) __________________________________________________________
Guardian Phone : _________________________________________________________________
Guardian Signature __________________________________________________ attesting “I have read
this packet and will help my child follow the guidelines stated above and included in this packet”.