8 Incredible Science Projects Kids Can Actually Do

There’s a lot of frustration surrounding kid science projects. So much, in fact, that The Atlantic published a lengthy editorial calling out the problems with this school curriculum staple. Hana Schank, the article’s author, talks about how schools often want projects that are way out of reach for kids, and science fairs tend to ”turn out to be a competition among parents—not children.” There’s also an interesting history of how science fairs evolved in our country’s schools—worth a read!

The kid science projects below may require a little bit of guidance from you, but you won’t have to do the project yourself. They’re developmentally appropriate for school-aged kids. If your child needs some help articulating these projects into something on a tri-fold board, this step-by-step guide from Science Buddies can help.

1. Evaporation

This project from Education.com looks at how liquids evaporate at different rates. It’s an easy one for kids to set up and monitor themselves. It does call for beakers, which I am betting you don’t have in your kitchen. You might want to see if the school will let your child borrow a few from the science classroom for this project. If not, you can use clear juice glasses and have the kids mark the liquid levels with a dry erase marker. Dry erase markers wipe off of glass (you may need a little bit of white vinegar to help remove it), so you don’t even have to sacrifice anything permanently from your kitchen. You may need to remind your child to check on the levels of liquids each day, but that’s about it!

Kid Science Experiments: Kid-Made 3D Glasses

3D glasses image courtesy of Crafting a Green World

2. 3D Glasses

Julie Finn at Crafting a Green World homeschools her two daughters and does all kinds of fantastic kid science projects with them (disclosure: I am the editor at Crafting a Green World, but I am legitimately in awe of the projects Julie does with her girls). These kid-made 3D glasses are a great way for kids to learn how 3D glasses work. Julie also encourages you to let your kid experiment with lens colors to see how they impact the glasses’ function.

3. How do stalactites and stalagmites form?

Your kid can use woolen thread (aka yarn) and baking soda to create her own stalactites and stalagmites! You might need to be available to help some with the setup, but this project from Science Kids looks pretty simple. Once it’s all set up, your kid just needs to remember to check in on her stalactites and stalagmites each day. Photos of the growing process would make a great display.

4. Baking Soda Balloon

This project from Science Bob is an acid-base experiment. When you mix baking soda and vinegar, they react to release carbon dioxide. If your kid does the experiment in an empty 2-liter, she can watch the results inflate a balloon. It’s easy to set up and quick to observe.

5. Gak Attack

If your kid hasn’t made gak, she’s in for a treat! Gak keeps for about a week in the fridge, so you have plenty of time to experiment. Your child can learn about polymers, and Gak is a fun toy to play with after the experimenting is done. There are tons of Gak tutorials online, but I like that Steve Spangler explains how it works in a way kids can understand.

6. Cartesian Diver

Is your kid learning about density in science class? She can turn an old soda bottle into a density experiment! Julie explains how she and her daughter created their own Cartesian diver and the basic density lesson your kid can take from it.

7. Walking Water

You know a kid can do this project, because you can see a kid doing the project right in the video. I think this would be a good way to encourage a child who’s intimidated about doing a science project this year.

Once your child has observed the magic of walking water, she can research absorption. The paper towel absorbs the water, which is how it moves from glass to glass. Coffee Cups and Crayons has a good explanation for how this works and some troubleshooting tips, in case your project isn’t working as well as the one in the video.

8. Cloud Jars

How do clouds hold water, and how does rain work? Your kid can answer these questions with this simple science experiment. This is a fun activity for even a preschooler, but older kids can dive into the science angle a bit. Have your child research clouds and rain, then perform this experiment from Learn with Play at Home to see it in action.

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Anna R
Anna R29 days ago

thank you

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus2 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

3 years ago

i like walking water project

3 years ago

thanks for posting

3 years ago

nice article

M. M.
M. M3 years ago

TYFS... I think this adult will try some!! ;-)

Jim Ven
Jim Ven3 years ago

thanks for the article.

Danuta Watola
Danuta W3 years ago

Thanks for sharing

Tiffany Schreiner

super cool! thank you :)

sandra vito
Sandra Vito3 years ago