What are some good/cool 5th grade science projects?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by dgamer84, Mar 30, 2011.

  1. dgamer84 macrumors regular

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    #1
    My nephew needs some ideas. All I can think of is the volcano one.



    Thanks
     
  2. Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

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    #2
    the best ones are always the interactive ones, where the other kids get something to do or to take away.

    e. g.: build a catapult, where you can modify counterweight, arm length, shooting angle (the science).
    make a target and have the kids shooting wrapped candies or marbles or quarters.
    if they hit the target the get to keep the 'shot' (the fun)
     
  3. jav6454 macrumors P6

    jav6454

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    #3
    Volcanos are cool. I did one for 5th grade.

    Just mix baking soda and vinegar, add coloring and watch the "eruption" occur.
     
  4. tooz macrumors 6502

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    #4
  5. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

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    #5
    I did an experiment with pill bugs when I was that age.
    It was do they like cold room temp or hot.

    I built a long aluminum foil bridge then filled 3 bags with water. 1 being ice watter. 1 room temp and 1 hot water.
    From there I put like 20 -30 pill bugs on it and gave them some time to move around and counted them at set intervals. Repeated it 3-4 times and got my results.

    Rather fun experiment to do. Biggest pain was collecting all the pill bugs. Pill bugs real name is isopods. Something I still remember after all these years. This experiment got me first place back in the day.
     
  6. alust2013 macrumors 601

    alust2013

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    #6
    Perhaps a home version of the Iodine clock? Although the explanation might be a bit hairy with the details. I like the mentos and diet coke too. He could even try it with different mentos and different sodas to determine differences.
     
  7. jav6454 macrumors P6

    jav6454

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    As long as its carbonated, it will be same result... so was the end results and conclusions from a youtube video testing Sprite, Coke, Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, & Fanta.
     
  8. Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

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    #8
    good luck in getting the teachers to approve the live demos
    :D
     
  9. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #9
    Is that like the potato battery?
     
  10. jav6454 macrumors P6

    jav6454

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    If you show a domino effect, then I think they'll allow a external presentation :D
     
  11. 4JNA macrumors 68000

    4JNA

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    #12
    i vote for laser pointers, spinning mirrors, and a big white board. cool patterns, and you could stand in the back and hum some pink floyd tunes...

    i didn't like 5th grade much, my projects were not usually allowed, and instead of potato batteries, i made a PVC potato launcher complete with moms hairspray, and the sparker/lighter from the camp lantern.

    i might not be such a good source... :eek::cool::)
     
  12. xray328 macrumors member

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    #13
    Really? I thought there was a mythbusters episode that showed Diet Coke was the best?

    My 5th grader just did the potato battery. Penny on one side of the potato, galvanized nail on the other. Generated .77V, so he connected two and it was enough to power a small LED. You can buy them as kits though and use one to power an LED clock.
     
  13. Don't panic, Mar 31, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2011

    Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

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    #15
    how about a potato-powered electromagnet?

    build a kynex crane with a multi-potato battery that powers a large nail electro-magnet.

    how many paperclips can it lift? what is the effect of changing the number of coils on the nail? how about the number of potatoes? connection in series? parallel? large or small potato? plastic or wood instead of metal nail?


    volcanos project i don't like, especially in fifth grade, because it is a total misrepresentation of the science of the volcano. unless you feed mentos to a diet-coke volcano, then i could change my mind :D
     
  14. jav6454 macrumors P6

    jav6454

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    #16
    Maybe the mentos is an atomic bomb being dropped into the volcano?
     
  15. iJohnHenry, Mar 31, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2011

    iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #17
    :eek: A very small IED, using diesel oil and ammonium nitrate. :eek:
     
  16. Don't panic macrumors 603

    Don't panic

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    #18
    :D there you go!!!

    (i didn't draw the remote-controlled helicopter that delivers the Mentos)
     

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  17. 63dot macrumors 603

    63dot

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    #19
    Baking soda and vinegar.

    Alone, either product is mildly suitable for cleaning, but combined, they are quite potent. You could go onto explain why that is and experiment on different surfaces and it's pretty safe vs. a volcano.

    We worked with copper and silver and see who could come up with best polish. For old copper pennies, people tried different home remedies and I took to Tabasco sauce. I don't know what grade that was in or if it was even high school.

    You could go and explain the PH scale and the different cleaners within that scale that we use everyday and why each has its place.

    For instance, the baking soda and vinegar does well almost everywhere but sometimes doesn't mesh with gasoline/oil. So when I cleaned my car battery contacts with baking soda, I used it with water and it was far more effective than the baking soda/vinegar recipe. Why? I don't quite know, but this line of research can surely make a paper.

    Also last night I cleaned the kitchen floor with orange oil and while it worked, it was not as good as enzyme cleaner. Why? ... that's another science project.

    I hope the "home" cleaning solutions thesis is suitable for fifth grade and does not involve too much chemistry and equations and that there is a simple way to approach this on a fifth grade level. Also, using everyday home chemicals is cheaper than going to the store for the sometimes good or sometimes bad (but overpriced) over the counter household cleaners and it's a great thing to showcase in this time of recession.
     
  18. Mousse macrumors 68000

    Mousse

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    #20
    I like this idea. Although, I'd go the trebuchet route. Make one that can shoot free throws from mid court.:cool:
     
  19. dgamer84 thread starter macrumors regular

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    #21
    Thanks for the suggestions people. Will take a look at all of them.
     

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