Overcoming this problem is probably the most difficult of the six items, and the solution of requiring several references is probably nothing new to most teachers.
However, with the advent of the Internet, getting information on a subject has become easier (though students need to be careful about a source’s accuracy), and thus students should be able to form a rationale for a project more effectively based on what they find (see Figure 2 for research ideas).
Comparing the effects of different fertilizers on a plant and drawing conclusions is a weak project, particularly if the student relies on only two plants and one fertilizer to draw conclusions.
Obviously, the more data points (e.g., plant growth comparisons) collected, the less experimental error there will be.
Furthermore comparing two fertilizers placed on two of the same type plants is a very simple and common experiment that will not get high marks at a fair.
The best projects are those that use multiple samples, contain well-defined variables, have treatments that are measured over a considerable period of time (weeks), and illustrate the process of retesting to provide experimental reliability.The better projects are the result of a student actually doing research.While he or she may not know everything about the project to start, research usually gives them a solid rationale for doing it.Project quality and a student’s successful achievement of good inquiry skills vary greatly from fair to fair.Participation in a science fair should not be viewed as the “one shot” opportunity for teachers to involve their students in inquiry, but rather it should provide both extensions and reinforcements to skills that were developed over time through a variety of classroom activities.” This approach demonstrates that a student actually has an interest in which fertilizer is most effective for growth enhancement, has a real enthusiasm for what they are doing, and illustrates the student’s understanding of a scientifically-based investigative process.Despite any errors that may be found in a project of this type, most judges will look favorably upon a student who shows passion and willingness to go the extra mile.” “What is the relationship between the stages of plant growth and different fertilizers?” or “Is there an optimal ratio between fertilizer and water that should be fed to different plants?Researching safely Safety should be a consideration for the successful design and implementation of science fair projects.The inclusion of safety in investigations is prerequisite to all endeavors within the science classroom and associated events outside class boundaries.