Four Simple and Competitive Science Fair Project Ideas

By Keren Perles

High school science projects tend to be more complex than the straightforward projects you may have seen or presented in middle school. These four ideas are complex enough for a high school science fair, but simple enough for most students to succeed.

Chemistry Models

Artistic students should consider project ideas that allow them to create things with their hands. Creating three-dimensional models is the perfect way to put your artistic talent to work. You can create a model of a DNA molecule, showing the double helix as well as the molecule's components. Alternatively, you can visually display an important chemical reaction, such as photosynthesis, by creating three-dimensional models of glucose, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water and showing how to balance the equation.

Make sure to check the fair's guidelines before deciding to build a model for a science fair project. Although these science projects are not experiments, they work well in science fairs that allow non-experiential entries.

Sports Science Projects

If you belong to a sports team, you can involve them in your science fair project. Are there any rumors your teammates are passing around about how to improve your game? For example, one teammate might swear by drinking two bottles of a sports drink before a game. Another might believe that shooting hoops with only one eye open drastically improves your chances of making a basket. A third might believe that her brand of sneakers gives her the best traction and gives her the best chance of success on the court. These are all, surprisingly, hypotheses that can be tested. Test them out in your high school science fair, or take a look at this article for more sports science fair projects,

Environment Projects

Many high school students are extremely interested in the environment and what they can do to reduce pollution and the consumption of fossil fuels. Try creating various models of different types of alternative energy sources, such as solar energy, wind energy, water energy, and biomass, and see which ones are most effective and efficient. (See this article for more science projects on renewable energy.)

Alternatively, do an experiment about which type of marketing works best to convince people to avoid littering, examine the differences between organic and traditional fertilizer, or compare the effectiveness of natural and chemical pesticides.

Consumer Product Projects

Are you trying to figure out which brand of a certain product works the best? Or do you know someone who is sure he has found the best product on the market? Test it out in your science fair project.

Some products you can test include:

  • Bathroom cleaning products, detergents
  • Batteries
  • Hairsprays
  • Paper towels
  • Chewing gum (test out which lasts the longest, which blows the largest bubble, etc.)
  • Soaps (look at the number of bacteria on a petri dish)
  • Diapers

Use your imagination to think of ways to test each of these products, and make sure to include a control group to ensure that your experiment takes everything into account. You can use one of these high school science project ideas as a springboard for your science project, using your own creativity to design the winning project at your science fair.