Survival tips for Science Fair project season… Part I

It’s getting near that time again… when the words “Science Fair Project” takes on an almost ‘dangerous’ chemical reaction in people – it strikes fear into the hearts students, dread into teachers, and frustration into parents worldwide. But does it have to be quite so dramatic?


I’ve got a list of the top Tips & Tricks to not only surviving the science fair project ‘season’, but making it so you can enjoy the process as you go along.  These tips are not for the kid building the nuclear reactor in the basement, or the student finding the cure for the common cold using household cleaning materials, or the kid down the street building an autonomous, robotic dog-walker.  Instead, they are for the rest of us trying to sludge through and make the best of it, and maybe even have fun learning something new.

The first step is figuring out what to do… and this will drive you bananas if you aren’t careful about how you go about finding a topic.  Once you’ve nailed down a topic, you’re going to need a few important components in your project to make it a true Science Fair project. We covered this topic in detail here.

Present your work using a tri-fold display board made  of sturdy cardboard or form core.  Steer clear of thin  poster board and recycled cardboard (unless it’s clean and painted neatly).

This may sound ridiculous, but make sure you can get the display board and project in and out of the door frame AND transport vehicle when you build it!  (I won’t tell you how many bloopers around this idea I’ve seen…)

Unless you’re a graphic artist, use a computer to print out the titles, text and graphics you need for the board.  One of the biggest mistakes people make is to throw as much information on the board as they possible can… Remember that you’re going for quality, not quantity.  One of the best questions you can ask yourself is… “Can the judge figure out what I’m trying to demonstrate?” Test it out on unwitting relatives and friends when they stop by to watch your progress.

Check spelling, grammar, and punctuation. No excuses.

Okay, enough tips for now.  In the next entry, I’ll show you the different sections you need to cover on your display board to be sure you’ve got your bases covered.


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    June 13, 2009 @ 7:35 am

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    June 14, 2009 @ 5:12 pm

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