School Science Projects for Juniors

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Science fair projects allow students to delve into an area of science in which they hopefully have an interest, or try to answer a practical question through experimentation. After they collect data, they get to share their work with other students in class and at the science fair. Juniors in high school study a variety of topics, such as biology, physics, chemistry, Earth sciences and at times, medicine and human health, so there are many choices when it comes to finding an appropriate project.

Detergents and Plants

This experiment's goal is to determine if detergents affect growth and overall health of plants. It may take up to a week to see the effects of detergent on plants. To start, purchase four similar plants and three different types of detergent. Inspect that each plant is healthy and that they are similar to one another. One plant will remain neutral and be watered only with distilled water throughout the experiment. Label the remaining three plants with the name of the detergent used. Once a day for a week, water each plant with one-quarter cup of water mixed with 1 teaspoon of the chosen detergent. The time of watering should be consistent everyday throughout the experiment. Make sure not to mix detergents together, as it will affect the results. Once the watering is complete, place the plants in sunlight. Prepare a chart illustrating the results for each day and each type of detergent. Include characteristics such as height, width, color and appearance of each plant. Use the result to discuss how detergents may affect natural habitats and the environment if pollution continues.

Corrosiveness of Soda

The purpose of this project is to determine which soda is the most corrosive in terms of harming tooth enamel. This experiment will requires at least one week. Place six plastic cups on a table and fill them with the following types of liquids: Coca Cola, Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, Sprite, Mountain Dew and distilled water. Label each cup with the name of the liquid it contains. In each cup, drop one tarnished penny. Each cup should now contain one penny and one beverage. Observe the tarnished pennies each day and compare them to the penny in the distilled water penny, which is the neutral tarnished penny. Create a graph that shows the daily developments of each penny. Identify which soda is most corrosive and explain why this is. It is also a good idea to put this knowledge into practice and explain how corrosive sodas affect enamel.

Organic vs. Inorganic

This experiment tests whether there is a taste difference between organic and inorganic dairy products. Prepare samples of organic and inorganic dairy products, such as milk, cheese and yogurt. To know which ones are organic and inorganic, label each sample with a number that correlates to its content. Gather 10 testers, preferably five girls and five boys. Ask each to try an inorganic sample of a product. The order of product testing is irrelevant. For project consistency, start by testing either organic or inorganic products first. Before continuing to the second set of samples, allow the testers to drink some water. Record any differences in taste they find and have them explain these differences. Repeat this step with the remaining dairy products. Prepare a chart that shows the results and testers' comments. Identify any patterns that emerge. Examine whether or not adding growth hormone to cows' diets to increase milk production affects the resulting dairy products. Background the project by exploring what scientists say about how the addition of growth hormone affects humans.

Measuring Air Pollution

The purpose of this project is to determine the amount of polluting particles, also known as foreign participles, in the air. The experiment focuses on one particular area of foreign particles, as it would be improper to generalize about air pollution particles based on one experiment in one setting. Select a place, such as the student's house, to conduct the test. Cut white poster board into squares and draw a square inside each. Smear some Vaseline inside the drawn squares. Punch holes into the corners of the poster board squares and use strings to hang them in various locations throughout the house and yard. After a week, collect the squares. Use a magnifying glass to examine the particles caught in the Vaseline. Discuss the amount of particles found in each specific area tested and how the areas chosen may reflect or affect the results. Determine what may have happened if the air was more polluted or less polluted. Discuss the effects of air pollutants on air quality and human health.

References

About the Author

Based in Toronto, Mary Jane has been writing for online magazines and databases since 2002. Her articles have appeared on the Simon & Schuster website and she received an editor's choice award in 2009. She holds a Master of Arts in psychology of language use from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

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