What About Middle School Science Projects for Girls Alone?

middle school girlBoys and girls may be equal, but in middle school they can act like complete different species. Sometimes as teachers you have to bite the bullet and so whatever it takes to get your students motivated and if coming up with separate science fair projects for girls will do the trick, why not try it?

It has nothing to do with if girls like science and has everything to do with peer pressure and coming across as being cool. Complete teaching guides have been written just on this subject! So here are some thoughts on ways you might get girls who need a little push happy to do a science fair project.

  1. Food – Food is something everyone is familiar with and is great for testing one variable of a recipe. They don’t realize that they are testing chemical reactions. You look at sweeteners, leavening, acids or even box vs home made.
  2. Comparing Brands– Take a look at which brand works best, which tastes best, which last longer, which cleans best etc. Comparing to a generic or home made product always adds a fun twist.
  3. Lotions and Creams – You can test chemical make-up, compare ingredients, scents, and again compare to a home made product.
  4. Hair Products– What is stronger, lasts longer, cleans the best. Is there really a difference between oily and dry products? Do hair styles stay put with gels and sprays?
  5. Animals– Anything to do with animals will always be a big hit with most girls. It could be dealing with their food, hatching eggs, raising chickens is usually a hit. Reptiles and mice on the other hand might not be such a bit hit! (Although I have seen lots of girls scare the boys with their snakes….. !)
  6. Television– what middle school student, boy or girl, won’t love saying they have to watch TV for a science homework? I’ve even seen kids look at televisions shows/commercials and count the number or times sweets are talked about out pushed at different age levels!

These are just some quick thoughts, but you get the picture. Tap into an interest and you can hook the middle school girls.

Lets think for a minute:

In middle school, the curriculum really zone in on teaching the scientific method. They love to have the kids do projects where they question something they run into in their normal lives and then run experiments. This gives them practice coming up with a specific question and then creating a hypothesis ( prediction) that you can prove or not with the experiment. This makes a middle school science project different than elementary.

What works great for middle school science project for girls (and boys too) is when the predictions can be outrageous, which suits their contrary nature, but the experiment will be pure and just prove them right, wrong on non-conclusive.

In addition in middle school they expect research and written reports and might as well make them research something they like or have some interest in.

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Rocks and Minerals Projects For Kids In Middle School

All Middle schools make their kids to a rocks and minerals unit, by then they call it geology.  They do everything from looking at the rock types to movement of the earths plates to solid testing and how mountains and volcanoes are formed. When it comes to science fair, the kids will be looking for a good fun rocks and mineral project for kids, but they will have to do research and  write up reports.

Here is a quick an easy rocks and minerals project for kids that  can then easily turn into an  all inclusive science fair proje1009155463_8c71d50474_oct ideas for middle school.

Test for hardness of different types of rocks.
First you would have to collect sample of rocks or anything made from rocks.  The way you test for hardness is by how easy or hard it is to make a scratch on the surface of the rock.  If you can do it with  your fingernail  it the first level of hardness,  The next level up let you scratch it with a penny. Other harder rocks need a knife and the hardest rocks can only be scratched using glass. The purest can’t be scratched by any of these methods.

You can see how easy it would be to set up a project.  You gather the materials,  your fingernail, a penny, a knife and a pieces of glass.  Then you line up a bunch of rocks and  first try  your finger nail and separate out all the rocks that show a scratch.  Then with the penny, ( they should scratch all the ones you set out, you can check) then  try to scratch the rest, separate out the ones that work.  Do the same for the knife and the glass, an you should have categorized your rocks by hardness.

Follow it up with research on characteristics of each type and you can put names to each category (igneous, sedimentary etc) and  see if you can discover exactly what type of rock it is, (sandstone, granite).

Rocks and minerals projects for kids lend them to a cross over event for middle school students by making a collection different types, doing an investigation experiment,  adding in some research and for fun do a demonstration. It is like  four types of science fair projects in one. You will find this a lot when choosing science fair ideas for middle school kids, you need a combo event.

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Middle School Science Project -Different Than Elementary

How is a middle school science project different?

When your middle school child needs to do a science fair project, you will notice that it is a bit more complicated than elementary school. This makes perfect sense since everything in middle school is a bit more involved! They are training your for the demands of high school science.

Here are some of things that makes a middle school science project different:

  • One: They want the kids to dig into topics further to understand both the How and Why, so you could do practically the same experiment, from elementary, only this time with research and explanations as to why it works that way.
  • Two: They want to teach the kids to really use and understand the scientific method, so many projects will be more about the process than the science it self. There might me more frequent, quick and easy experiments at first, to teach the steps.
  • Three: They want to do more cross curricular things, so they kids will use their language arts skills and structured report writing when doing research and writing reports.
  • Four: They will be ask students to do more in class demonstrations that let you show show how some different sides of science work..
  • Five: There will be more times when the kids have to explain what they are doing in front of the class without many notes.
  • Six: There is a whole lot more independent work. More homework, more reading about science, more writing up and organizing experiments on your own. With science, this is often where the aha! moments come.

The trick of course with anything you do with middle schoolers, is to keep them interested, keep them moving, and at the same time to challenge them. So it is not really how to make a middle school science project different, but how middle schoolers in general are different


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