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Math Science Projects



Math science projects are often overlooked when considering science fair projects. This article has information, tips, and ideas for fun and easy math science projects. Consider making your next science fair project a math science project.

The topics for this group of science projects are forms of matter and chemistry. These adaptable science projects can both extend classroom and textbook learning as well as undergo modification to better suit your student or your curriculum. In addition, projects can be adapted from one grade range to another by making them easier or adding complexity.

Fractals

• Use a fern to model and explain fractals.

  •     Explain why broccoli is not a true fractal.
  •     Write a computer program to create a fractal.
  •     Compare natural fractals with fractal landscape generation.

Egg Sorting

• Eggs are sold sorted into sizes, such as Large, Extra Large, and Small. Using the criteria that producers are supposed to use, and an experiment of your own design, determine the accuracy rating of egg sorting.

  •     After your initial project, expand to include different brands, including organic eggs, if they weren’t in your initial go round.
  •     Find out if the sorting of white eggs is any more or less accurate than the sorting of brown eggs.
  •     Determine the effects on recipes if eggs of the wrong sizes are used.

Statistics

• Design an experiment to compare and contrast methods of biostatistical sampling.

  •     Determine the possible effects of biostatistical errors in a subject area of your choice.
  •     Study the kinds of sampling errors that can occur. Describe how biostatistical sampling errors fit into the group.

Pitch Calculation

• Choose a musical instrument in which size or amount is related to pitch, such as the size of the wood blocks in a xylophone or the amount of water in a tuned series of water glasses or the size of handbells. Using as few samples as possible, see if you can develop a method that allows you to predict a size for a particular pitch.

  •     Determine if at some extreme point your method will fail and if so, explain why it fails.
  •     Use what you’ve learned as you construct an instrument that is played by plucking rubber bands stretched over nails. Determine the pitches you want and work out a method to place the nails to achieve your goal.

Anatomy

•  In Gulliver’s Travels, Jonathan Swift wrote of a Lilliputian tailor measuring Gulliver for clothing: “Then they measured my right thumb and desired no more; for, by a mathematical computation, that twice round the thumb is once round the wrist, and so on to the neck and the waist, and by the help of my old shirt, which I displayed on the ground before them for a pattern, they fitted me exactly.” Design an experiment to determine whether you can measure a person’s thumb (or one other part) and come anywhere close to estimating the correct measurements of the rest of their body.

  •     Determine the average proportions of adult men and adult women.
  •     Determine the average proportions of newborns.
  •     Compare and contrast the average proportions of adults and newborns.

• In his drawing of “Vitruvian Man,” Leonardo da Vinci showcases the proportional theory of Vitruvius, Roman architect from the first century BC. Explain the drawing and its mathematical basis.

• Explain how the proportional study by Da Vinci correlates to what you learned about average human proportions from studying Gulliver’s tailor’s methodology?

Oceanography/Potomology

• Analyze the tides in a location near you by measuring the difference in water level between high tide and low tide.

            • Compare your findings to the difference in water level in other places.

• In the books about Winnie-the-Pooh, Pooh and Piglet play a game called Pooh sticks in which they use the speed of sticks tossed off a bridge to determine who wins. Devise a way to use tossing small sticks in the water to judge the river’s speed.

            • Use a second method to measure the river’s speed. Which method do you think is more accurate? Why?