Science Fair 2008

#2 of 5 and #3 of 5 (because of their close proximity in ages, and where their birthdays fall) are back to back in school  (grades 5 and 6).  This is not normally an "issue", but the kids school has the 6th graders undertake some larger "projects", and the 5th graders taking on some of these projects (as a "introduction" to what is going to be expected of them next year). 

plantsJust SOME of these examples include the Science Fair / Invention Convention, Geography Projects, 6th Grade Exit Projects, etc.  The Science Fair Project is one of the projects that both the 5th and 6th graders partake in.  The Science Fair project got pushed back from Jan/Feb to Mar/April this year due to the "availability of judges".

The kids are allowed to complete a science project of their own, or to "partner up" with another student (having higher expectations, and requirements from the two-person teams)   

#2 of 5 decided to partner up with a classmate, and together they did a project about growing plants using different fluids to see how they affect the growth.  The boys used Pepsi Max (infused with ginseng), Coffee, Beer, Vinegar, Gatorade, and Water.  #2 of 5's friend did the project at their house, and my biggest roll was transporting #2 of 5 there - and providing a few of the fluids.  So I lucked out there a little bit. 

#3 of 5 (on the other hand) was doing his alone, and since he tends to need a little bit more help then his brother (due to dyslexia).  I was a bit more "involved" with his project than with his brother's. 

paint #3 of 5's original project was to see how many layers of paint it would take before you "noticed" that your room was "smaller".  We chose one inch as an arbitrary number that would be "noticeable".  He turned in his idea, and it was shot down as "not being an experiment".  His teacher made a related suggestion though - and that was to measure and compare the thickness of various types of paint.  He liked this idea just about as much, and so we were off.  He used Latex, Oil, and Spray paint.  He learned all about the pigments, fillers, binders, solvents, and additives of the various types of paint.  He learned about and used a micrometer for the first time in his young life.  And, since (many years ago) a large portion of my job (in a local hardware store) centered around paint, I had some basic knowledge already, and found helping #2 of 5 research this topic to be interesting!   

We got off to a good start but somewhere along the line we lost the sheet that contained his data.  About half way through the experiment he had to start all over.  That pushed us WAY back, and put a little "pinch" on his time line. Add to this is the fact my boy's tendency to be "procrastinators"  (hmm... I wonder where they get that from... (blushing)). and you can imagine how busy this weekend was for the boys and I.

We got word today that #2 of 5 and his partner took FIRST PLACE overall for all the "partnered" projects, and #3 of 5 took THIRD PLACE overall from the independent projects! 



  1. Wooooo Hooooooo! Way to go, guys!

  2. W00T!! W00T!!!

    Nice job! Congratulations!

  3. What a great Dad to sacrafice some of your beer for science.
    I am looking forward to science fairs for my own kids.
    They let you use blow torches, right?

  4. Thanks guys! When we get back from our "Environmental Learning Adventure" - I'll be sure to show your comments to my boys! They will think it's "so cool"!!


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