Science fair projects involve designing an experiment to test a hypothesis. Furthermore, they require conducting extensive research on a topic and creating an in-depth presentation.
These experiments are accessible for 8th graders to undertake independently, from straightforward demonstrations such as the Mentos and Diet Coke volcano to more in-depth studies into how plants respond to music.
Rube Goldberg Machine
Rube Goldberg Machines are complex yet simple chain reactions designed to accomplish one specific task. This project fosters creativity, innovation, and teamwork while encouraging creative problem-solving skills.
Students can create a Rube Goldberg Machine as part of a school project and gain an insight into collisions and energy transfer through its construction.
Example: OK Go has created a Rube Goldberg machine to accompany their song, “This Too Shall Pass.” View it here.
UV beads contain pigments that react with the ultraviolet radiation emitted by the sun (even on cloudy days) by changing colors from off-white to vibrant ones, providing an easy way to demonstrate how sun radiation can cause irreparable harm.
Students can use beads to test the efficacy of sunscreen, sunglasses, and windows. Students can string the beads together into bracelets or zipper pulls that remind them to reapply sunscreen on a regular basis.
Optic illusions make an engaging science fair project: these visual deceptions can teach us much about how our brains interpret images that come through our eyes. There are various types of optical illusions ranging from colors, patterns, illusory motion and literal illusions – and all provide insights into human thought processes.
Some optical illusions are man-made while others occur naturally – all are captivating to witness and can cause eye strain if exposed for long enough periods of time.
Electrolytes are minerals which naturally possess either a positive or negative electric charge, and when mixed with water they create ions which conduct electricity.
When sodium chloride dissolves in water, its atoms dissociate into positive and negative ions that conduct electricity without negatively affecting surrounding molecules of water.
Electrolytes play an essential role in keeping our bodies functioning normally, including regulating the amount of fluid circulating in the bloodstream, maintaining optimal pH levels, and stimulating nerve impulses. If imbalanced levels arise due to improper nutrition or other sources, the consequences can be serious and even life threatening.
Newton’s Cradle is a timeless desktop science toy that illustrates conservation of energy and momentum with swinging spheres, as well as showing that for every action there will be equal and opposite reactions.
When one of the end balls is lifted and released, a force moves through all of them until it strikes one that swings up, sending shockwaves through all remaining balls until it reaches one that responds by rising like an extended rubber band.
Paper Cup Structure
Paper cups provide an economical and accessible method of drinking liquid, and have multiple applications in various fields. Furthermore, their recycling capabilities help preserve resources.
Did you know that paper cups are surprisingly strong? Try this experiment: Place several paper cups evenly on the ground and then put a piece of cardboard on top of them, before standing on them to see if you can stand on them without them collapsing – if so, congratulations!
Make DNA more accessible with this awesome experiment from Little Bins for Little Hands and discover how water can be divided into hydrogen and oxygen with this project from Scientific American.
ThoughtCo offers this science fair idea that uses color-changing UV beads to create an optical illusion that will impress judges at science fair. Investigate chemistry and engineering while creating this Rube Goldberg machine capable of performing multiple tasks.
Do peppermint candy help increase concentration and reaction time? Give this fun experiment from Bright Hub Education a try for yourself and find out!
Kids love batteries, making this project sure to catch their interest. They’ll test three types of batteries at different temperatures to see which last the longest.
With this fun science fair experiment, find out if laundry detergent commercials really do deliver on their promise of cleanliness! They’ll determine which solution best cleans, as well as why.
What causes ice to melt fastest? With this straightforward project, your 8th grader will learn important lessons on momentum – plus it provides an enjoyable opportunity for science and engineering!