8th Grade

When it comes to designing science fair projects for 8th grade students, one of the most tried-and-true ideas is the Seed Germination Project.

These simple science experiments allow dozens of variations testing for different variables: you can test the effect of additional sunlight, different temperatures, inside vs. outside, introduction of various chemicals, etc.

There are all kinds of things you can do to seeds after you plant them to test germination and growth rates. Literally dozens of unique 8th grade science fair projects can be generated from this one model. Let’s look at two variants on these science fair projects for 8th grade students, and then you can use one of them…or create your own.

Project #1
Effect of Temperature on Germination




MATERIALS:

  • 12 dried lima beans (uncooked, of course)
  • 3 sponges
  • 3 plates (not paper plates)
  • 3 paper napkins
  • 3 thermometers
  • a refrigerator
  • a lamp with an old-style light-bulb (fluorescent lights and CFLs won’t do it) data sheet

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Come up with your hypothesis for these science fair projects for 8th grade – do you think beans will be more likely to germinate in hot, cold, or medium temperatures? Why?

2. Place one sponge on each plate

3. Arrange your lima beans on the sponge so that they are not too close to each other

4. Pour some water over the beans so that the sponge is well-soaked and the water collects on the plate. The beans should not be floating or submerged – too much water can kill them.

5. Cover the beans with a napkin so that they won’t dry out.

6. Place a thermometer in between the napkin and the sponge to record temperature where the beans are.

7. You should now have 3 identical bean preparations. Place one indoors, in a medium-temperature spot. Place another in the refrigerator, and put the third under the lamp, about 12 inches away from the bulb.

8. After a little time, check all three thermometers to get your initial temperature.

9. Over the next 1-2 weeks, check on your beans once a day at the same time. Record the date and time on your data sheet, write down the temperature, and take notes or diagram what is happening to the seeds in each location. If and when your beans start to sprout, you can try gently measuring the length of each sprout and writing that down as well.

10. Each time you check your beans, make sure that the sponge is still wet, but not too wet. Add or squeeze out small amounts of water as necessary.

11. At this point, you should have a notebook full of data. Does it match your hypothesis? Put images and graphs of the data on your poster for a winning science fair projects for 8th grade.

 

Project #2
Effect of Sugar on Germination




These science fair projects for 8th grade follow the same outline, but this time we’re going to test a different variable.

MATERIALS:

  • 12 dried lima beans (uncooked, of course)
  • 3 sponges
  • 3 plates (not paper plates)
  • 3 paper napkins
  • Measuring cup
  • 2 jars or bottles with lids
  • Granulated sugar
  • data sheet

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Come up with your hypothesis – do you think beans will be more likely to germinate with or without added sugar? Or do you think there will be no effect?

2. Place one sponge on each plate

3. Arrange your lima beans on the sponge so that they are not too close to each other

4. Prepare three water solutions: one should be high concentration (½ cup of sugar in 2 cups of water for a concentration of 1:4), one should be low concentration (¼ cup of sugar in 2 cups of water for a concentration of 1:8), and one should have no sugar

5. Pour some of the water over the beans so that the sponge is well-soaked and the water collects on the plate. The beans should not be floating or submerged – too much water can kill them. Use one sugar-water solution on each sponge.

6. Mark each preparation so that you know which one is high-concentration, which one is low-concentration, and which one is no sugar.

7. Cover the leftovers of your sugar-water solutions and keep them in the fridge, in case you need to add more to your sponges later on.

8. Cover the beans with a napkin so that they won’t dry out.

9. Over the next 1-2 weeks, check on your beans once a day at the same time. Record the date and time on your data sheet, the diagram or write down what is happening to each seed preparation. If and when your beans start to sprout, you can try gently measuring the length of each sprout and writing that down as well.

10. Each time you check your beans, make sure that the sponge is still wet, but not too wet. Add or squeeze out small amounts of water as necessary.

11. At this point, you should have a notebook full of data. Does it match your hypothesis? Put images and graphs of the data on your poster for fantastic science fair projects for 8th grade students.

 

Leave a Reply