The next part of designing your science fair project is writing down your procedure. Your procedure is a list of the steps you will take to carry out your project.
(This article is the sixth in a series of 10 which walks a student and his parent through creating a science fair project. See the end of this post for links to the other articles. )
It’s time to get out your log book and start writing your procedure for your science fair project. You should include your constants (what you are doing the same each time) in your procedure.
A lot of your procedure will depend on what type of project you are doing. For example, if you are measuring something, include how the measurements will be taken. (Remember to use metric units.) If your study is a collection, the procedure might be the steps you will take every time you collect an object, including how you will record the characteristics that you are studying. If your study is an observation, it might be the steps you will take every time you observe the situation or pattern. If your study is a model, it might be the steps you will take to create the model. If your study is an experiment, it might be the alterations you will be making and what you will record each time. If your study is an invention, it might be the changes and recordings you will make when testing your invention.
Depending on the type of study you are doing, you might want to use controls, samples, or trials. A control is a base of comparison. In an experiment it is usually zero amount of the independent variable. In a model it is a picture or drawing of the real thing. A sample is a specimen in a collection, a recording in an observation, or a result in an experiment. A trial is a repeat of an experiment to see if your results are the same each time.
Your assignment for this step is to write your procedure in your log book. If you are using a control, samples, or trials, include those also.
Note to Parents
Remember that the adult has three roles in a science fair project – mentor, coach, and gopher. This week you might be a mentor.
Remember to guide by asking questions. If you read the procedure and you notice some steps are missing, try not to tell your child what to write. Instead ask “Did you forget a step between _____ and ______?” or “Are you going to use a control?” Remember that the student makes the final decisions.This article is part of the Creating a Science Fair Project series. See the list below for links to the other articles in this series.
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 1 - The Log Book
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 2 – Choosing a Topic
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 3 – Collect Information
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 4 – Problem and Hypothesis
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 5 – DesignType Category
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 6 – The Procedure
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 7 – Run Your Study
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 8 – Analyze and Interpret Your Results
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 9 – Arrive at a Conclusion
- Creating a Science Fair Project Step 10 – Create Your Display