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The middle school science investigations came to a close on Friday, May 12 at the Middle School Science Fair where fifteen groups in Grade 7 and nine groups in Grade 6 presented their scientific findings to the school community.

The middle school science investigations are designed to provide students with the opportunity to practice the scientific method… and they quickly learn that it is a messier process than expected! During this hands-on unit that takes place over three months in Semester Two, students work collaboratively in groups of two to four to further refine their skills in problem solving and analysis as well as those essential to working in a lab. These are skills they will build on as they progress through the Science curriculum at Saint Maur and IB. Below are the research questions investigated by the students this year.

Grade 6

  • Which type of diaper absorbs the most fluid: infant diapers, toddler diapers or adult diapers?
  • How does the mass of borax affect the stiffness of slime?
  • How does the environment (light or dark) affect the movement of pill bugs (Armadillidiidae)?
  • How does the mass of baking soda affect the distance a cork travels from a handmade baking soda and citric acid rocket?
  • How do different liquids affect the volume of Orbeez (a super absorbent polymer)?
  • How does the type of battery affect the strength of electromagnet?
  • How do ingredients in stain cleaners affect the accuracy of taking out stains?
  • Which fruit produces the most electricity in volts?
  • What shape falls the fastest with the same weight/material?

Grade 7

  • Which laundry detergent is best at removing soy sauce stains?
  • Does a plant grow more when you give it nitrogen, phosphorous or plain tap water?
  • How does light intensity affect the rate of photosynthesis?
  • Do low-fat foods have more sugar than their full-fat varieties?
  • How does the mass of an egg change when it’s placed in different concentrations of sugar water after being soaked in vinegar for 24-hours?
  • Which type drink reduces spiciness the most: water, full-fat milk, low-fat milk, fat-free milk or lactose-free milk?
  • How does caffeine affect the time it takes for a flowering plant to wilt?
  • Which produces the most plant growth in kidney beans: calcium, nitrogen, or a mixture of both?
  • How does the mass of yeast affect the volume of foam produced when it is mixed with reacting dilute hydrogen peroxide and soap?
  • How does the mood of music affect heart rate when it is measured by a heart rate monitor?
  • Do people in Drama class get less nervous than people not in Drama class (as measured by their heart rate) when reading in front of others?
  • Which soap makes a bigger dry ice bubble: hand soap or dish soap?
  • Which erasable ink disappears at the lowest temperature?
  • How does the mass of baking soda affect the volume of carbon dioxide produced when it is reacted with vinegar?
  • How does the number of Mentos affect the distance traveled by a car made out of a coke bottle?
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