Science Projects for Every Subject

How many times have you seen a science demonstration or watched a cool video and wished you could do something similar? While having a science lab certainly expands the type of projects you can do, there are many entertaining and fascinating projects you can do using everyday materials found in your own home or classroom.

The projects listed here are grouped according to subject, so no matter what you're interested in, you'll find an exciting activity.

You'll find projects for every age and skill level, generally intended for the home or a basic school lab.

To understand the basics of chemical reactions, start with the classic baking soda volcano or get a little more advanced and make your own hydrogen gas. Next, learn the basics of crystallography with our collection of crystal-related experiments

For younger students, our bubble-related experiments are simple, safe, and lots of fun. But if you're looking to turn up the heat, explore our collection of fire and smoke experiments

Because everyone knows science is more fun when you can eat it, try some of our chemistry experiments involving food. And finally, our weather-related experiments are perfect for amateur meteorologists any time of the year. 

Turn a Science Project Into a Science Experiment

While science projects may be done simply because they are fun and raise interest in a subject, you can use them as the basis for experiments.

An experiment is a part of the scientific method. The scientific method, in turn, is a step-by-step process used to ask and answer questions about the natural world. To apply the scientific method, follow these steps:

  1. Make observations: Whether you're aware of it or not, you always know something about a subject before you perform a project or experiment with it. Sometimes observations take the form of background research. Sometimes they are qualities of a subject you notice. It's a good idea to keep a notebook to record your experiences before a project. Make notes of anything of interest to you.
  1. Propose a hypothesis: Think of a hypothesis in the form of cause and effect. If you take an action, what do you think the effect will be? For the projects in this list, think what might happen if you change the amounts of ingredients or substitute one material for another.
  2. Design and perform an experiment: An experiment is a way to test a hypothesis. Example: Do all brands of paper towels pick up the same amount of water? An experiment might be to measure the amount of liquid picked up by different paper towels and see if it's the same.
  3. Accept or reject the hypothesis: If your hypothesis was that all brands of paper towels are equal, yet your data indicates they picked up different volumes of water, you would reject the hypothesis. Rejecting a hypothesis doesn't mean the science was bad. On the contrary, you can tell more from a rejected hypothesis than an accepted one.
  4. Propose a new hypothesis: If you rejected your hypothesis, you can form a new one to test. In other cases, your initial experiment might raise other questions to explore.

A Note About Lab Safety

Whether you conduct projects in your kitchen or a formal laboratory, keep safety first and foremost in your mind.

  • Always read the instructions and warning labels on chemicals, even common kitchen and cleaning products. In particular, note whether there are restrictions about which chemicals can be stored together and what hazards are associated with the ingredients. Note whether or not a product is toxic or poses a hazard if it is inhaled, ingested, or touches skin.
  • Prepare for an accident before one happens. Know the location of the fire extinguisher and how to use it. Know what to do if you break glassware, accidentally injure yourself, or spill a chemical.
  • Dress appropriately for science. Some projects in this list require no special protective gear. Others are best performed with safety googles, gloves, a lab coat (or old shirt), long pants, and covered shoes.
  • Don't eat or drink around your projects. Many science projects involve materials you don't want to ingest. Also, if you're snacking, you're distracted. Keep your focus on your project.
  • Don't play mad scientist. Young children may think chemistry is about mixing together chemicals and seeing what happens or that biology involves testing the reactions of animals to different situations. This is not science. Good science is like good cooking. Start by following a protocol to the letter. Once you understand the basic principles, you can expand your experiment in new directions following the principles of the scientific method.

    A Final Word About Science Projects

    From each project, you'll find links to explore many other science activities. Use these projects as a starting point to ignite interest in science and learn more about a subject. But, don't feel like you need written instructions to continue your exploration of science! You can apply the scientific method to ask and answer any question or explore solutions to any problem. When faced with a question, ask yourself if you can predict an answer and test whether or not it is valid. When you have a problem, use science to logically explore the cause and effect of any action you might take. Before you know it, you'll be a scientist.

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    Your Citation
    Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Science Projects for Every Subject." ThoughtCo, Feb. 12, 2018, Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2018, February 12). Science Projects for Every Subject. Retrieved from Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Science Projects for Every Subject." ThoughtCo. (accessed February 18, 2018).