Investigatory projects are often referred to as science projects. It helps kids practice hands-on discovery methods. It allows students to work with a theory and walk through the process of collecting data and building conclusions. This process fosters a sense of accomplishment in addition to encouraging curiosity in the student's surroundings.
Home Power Consumption
A simple, yet interesting, investigation comes from exploring your home usage of power. You can read your power meter for a particular day in four-hour increments. This determines a baseline for how much power is consumed during different times of day. From here you can explore what limiting certain machines in the house do to the power consumption during the same time frames. The goal of the study can be to investigate the best possible combination for the happiness of the family and using the least power possible.
How Plants Affect Temperature
Everyone knows shade from trees helps to bring down temperature, but have you ever walked from a cement area to the lawn and noticed a drop in temperature? You can investigate how much different plant life can change the temperature of a particular area. Are there ways you could incorporate plants in order to reduce the energy consumption by decreasing the amount of air conditioning required? You can study plant/temperature effect over both the summer and the winter months. Does vegetation help keep things warm in the colder months? Take various temperatures and keep a log over the span of a few seasons. Choose places high and low in vegetation and compare the differences.
Water Supply, Where Does Your Water Come From?
Many people who live in cities do not know where the water in the faucet originates. You can investigate the source of your water through the water company. Your goal should be to source the water all the way back to the original main water source such as a lake or a river. You can take the project a step farther by determining how much water is wasted in the transportation process due to evaporation.
Solar Energy Storage; Harnessing the Power of the Sun
Many people know solar energy can be used for various devices but do not understand the storage or conversion process. Study the different avenues of storing solar energy and which ones are the most effective. Do a baseline between the benefits of each type of system and how much sun is truly required to power a generator, a house, or a smaller device. You can calculate the effectiveness of overall sun power versus current hydroelectric power.