Thursday, 8 January 2015

Science Fair

Assalamu Alaikum Dear parents,

I hope you have had a restful winter break with your family.I have the pleasure  to inform you that this year Insha'a Allah grade 4 are invited to participate in the science fair that will be held on Thursday, March 26, 2015

For this grade, the participation is optional as the research and work involved are to be done outside the school and the project is not evaluated. However, students who wish to participate are required to work with a partner. Teacher Marwa , teacher Seher and myself are available to provide help when needed.

I am attaching the science fair handbook to help your child throughout his/her work.

Students, who  would like to participate in the science fair, are required to fill out the registration form and return it to their teacher  by the end of January. Students are given the timeline to help them manage their time.

For any question, feel free to email me any time.

Jazakum Allah for your support and cooperation

Dr. Amina Ould-brahim,
Science Coordinator l
Abraar School: Islamic Education for the Next Generation
Secondary Campus: 1085 Grenon Avenue, Ottawa, ON K2B 8L7 | ph.613-820-0044 | fx.613-820-1495
Elementary Campus: 70 Fieldrow Street, Ottawa, ON K2G 2Y7 | ph.613-226-1396 | fx. 613-226-2745
Find us on: Facebook Twitter
Support Abraar by Donating Online: 
Donate Now (all donations are tax deductible)

Elementary Science Fair
Planning Guide

Abraar School Elementary Campus
2014 – 2015

Table of Contents


Letter to parents                                                                                              3
Project time line                                                                                               4
Categories                                                                                                          5
Research approach                                                                                         5
Display board                                                                                                     9
Science Fair Questions                                                                                   11

Letter to Parents
Friday December 19, 2014
Dear Parents,
Assalamu Alaikum,
Your child is taking part in the Abraar School Elementary Campus Science Fair scheduled for Thursday, March 26th, 2015. This exciting event encourages students to think like young scientists. In the next few weeks, your child will design a science project using the scientific method or the Engineering Design Process to solve a problem. In this activity, students will have the opportunity to develop skills in creative thinking, problem solving and communication (oral and written).
Your cooperation is appreciated in encouraging your child and monitoring his/her progress along the way. Your support is the key to a successful project, but please do not allow your involvement to extend any further in order to assure equity and promote student learning. Guide your child whenever and wherever you can. It is important that the final project reflects student individual effort and design.
Abraar School Science Fair Guide will be posted on the blog and help will be provided to students whenever they need it during the various stages of their projects.
For suggestions on helping your child through this process, see the website at
Although participating in the event is already a reward in itself, we like to offer recognition (in the form of a prize) to the top students for their excellence in each category. We would appreciate your generosity in this regard by helping us cover the cost of the prizes. If you are able to help with a financial donation, you may give it or send it to Sr. Naida or to myself.
May Allah reward all of you for your generous contributions and support!
For any question, please email me at the address below
Jazakum Allah Kheiran for your cooperation,
Dr. Amina Ould-brahim,
Science Coordinator l
Abraar School: Islamic Education for the Next Generation
Secondary Campus: 1085 Grenon Avenue, Ottawa, ON K2B 8L7 | ph.613-820-0044 | fx.613-820-1495
Elementary Campus: 70 Fieldrow Street, Ottawa, ON K2G 2Y7 | ph.613-226-1396 | fx. 613-226-2745
Find us on: Facebook | Twitter
Support Abraar by Donating Online: 
Donate Now (all donations are tax deductible)


Project Timeline
Due Date
Project Component
Y / N
Project proposal:
1) - Students must have their partners, decided on their testable question and have formulated their hypothesis.
2) - Students must keep a journal to write down notes. This journal must be presented to the judges.
Background research and experiment details:
1) - Students submit the project name, a summary of their research, the list of material and the procedure.
2) - Students have done also one test of their experiment and collected the first data.
Data tables , graphical representation, pictures of the experiments Data Analysis:
1)- students have their data tables, graph, pictures  ready
2)- Analysis of Results
Conclusion, Abstract:
1) - Conclusions: Support or reject hypothesis with reasons – why?
2)- Applications: How can your experiment apply to the real world, extensions/further investigation
3)- Bibliography: Supply all references
4)- Abstract: Summary of purpose, procedures, results and conclusion (must be between 200 and 250 words/typed)
Final Check
1)- Prepare the presentation board (be creative and detailed oriented)
2)- Review the presentation board (Verify that all the required information is in its correct place)
Abraar Science Fair
Thursday, March 26 2015
From 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM
School Gymnasium


This year we are adopting the same categories as the Ottawa Regional Science Fair (ORSF) even though grades 5 and 6 would not be able to participate to the ORSF.
The categories are as follow:
·        Discovery - Create new fundamental knowledge based on your curiosity by asking a question and using the techniques of scientific inquiry to develop an answer.
·        Energy - Improve our use of current energy sources, enable the transition to alternative energy sources, or reduce our energy footprint.
·        Environment - Reduce our impact on, improve our understanding of, and ensure the quality of water air, soil, and the diversity of living things.
·        Health - Increase our understanding of the human body, or apply science and technology to improve health, control disease, or support an again population.
·        Information - Enhance communication and our use of information using digital and networking technologies, or applications of new media.
·        Innovation - Combine scientific principles with your creativity to develop a new material, structure, device, or system to solve a problem or improve an existing solution.
·        Resources - Develop better ways to use our natural resources that provide sustainable sources of food, products, or prosperity.

When registering with your teacher, identify the category of your project. Ask for advice (your teacher or Tr. Amina) if you are not sure.

Research Approach

Choose a subject that interest you, do the background research and write down the references for your documentation. If your project is an experiment, follow the steps of the scientific method to carry out your research:
The scientific method is a way to ask and answer scientific questions by making observations and doing experiments. The steps of the scientific method are to:
Fig1: the steps for Scientific Method
  • It is important for your experiment to be a fair test. A "fair test" occurs when you change only one factor (variable) and keep all other conditions the same.
The following paragraph is adapted from: The elementary Science Fair Planning authored by Lora Holt

      Designing an experiment is really cool because you get to use your imagination to come up with a test for your problem, and most of all, you get to prove (or disprove) your Hypothesis. Remember to take plenty of pictures as you go through these seven very simple steps.

First: Gather up your materials: What will you need to perform your experiment? The safest way to
do this is get that adult you recruited to help you get the stuff you need. Oh, did we mention to take pictures
      or draw pictures of your materials. This will come in handy when you are making your board display.

Second: Write a PROCEDURE. A procedure is a list of steps that you did to perform an experiment.
Why do you need to write it down? Well it’s like giving someone a recipe to your favorite dish. If they
want to try it, they can follow your steps to test if it’s true. Scientists do this so that people will believe that
they did the experiment and also to let other people test what they found out. Did we mention to take
pictures of yourself doing the steps?

Third: Identify your variables. The variables are any factors that can change in an experiment.
Remember that when you are testing your experiment you should only test one variable at a time in
order to get accurate results. In other words, if you want to test the affect that water has on plant growth,
then all the plants you test should be in the same conditions, these are called controlled variables: same
type of dirt, same type of plant, same type of location, same amount of sunlight, etc. The only variable
you would change from plant to plant would be the amount of water it received. This is called the independent
or manipulated variable. The independent variable is the factor you are testing. The results
of the test that you do are called the dependent or responding variables. The responding variable is
what happens as a result of your test. Knowing what your variables are is very important because if you
don’t know them you won’t be able to collect your data or read your results.

Fourth: TEST, TEST, TEST. Remember that the judges expect your results to be consistent in order to
be a good experiment, in other words, when you cook from a recipe you expect the outcomes to be the
same if you followed the directions (or procedure) step by step. So that means you need to do the experiment
more than once in order to test it properly. We recommend five times or more. More is better!
Don’t forget to take pictures of the science project being done and the results.

Fifth: Collect your DATA. This means write down or record the results of the experiment every time
you test it. Be sure you also need to organize it in a way that it is easy to read the results. Most scientists
use tables, graphs and other organizers to show their results. Organizing makes the results easy to read,
and much easier to recognize patterns that might be occurring in your results. (Besides, it impresses the
judges when you use them.) But don’t make a graph or table because we asked you to, use it to benefit
      your project and to help you make sense of the results. There is nothing worse than having graphs and
            tables that have nothing to do with answering the question of a science project.

If your project is an innovation, follow the steps of the Engineering Design Process.

  • The engineering design process is the set of steps that a designer takes to go from first, identifying a problem or need to, at the end, creating and developing a solution that solves the problem or meets the need.
  • The steps of the engineering design process are as illustrated in the diagram below:

        The Engineering Design Process

Fig2: the steps for the Engineering Process

   During the engineering design process, designers frequently jump back and forth between steps. Going back to earlier steps is common. This way of working is called iteration, and it is likely that your process will do the same!
Here is the fun part and don’t forget to take pictures, pictures and more pictures!!!!
First: Define the problem:  Look around you and define a problem that you think you can find a good solution   to it. Oh, did we mention to take pictures or draw pictures of your materials. This will come in handy when you are making your board display.

Second: Do your research:  A Guess what? The best places for that are your local/school library and of course the Internet. An advice for you: write down the references of all the articles /book you read or websites you visit. This will come handy for your bibliography. Want to know how to write it?  Ask Teacher Nancy, she is the Book guru.

Third: Think about the model you want to make: Sketch your idea of the model, a sketch notebook would be a good buy at this point, make the modification you want until you are satisfied. Make a nice drawing on a squared paper and keep it for your display. This is your development work

Fourth: TEST, Modify, TEST, Modify. Test your model and make the necessary changes until it works the way you want it. Remember to keep track and write all the changes you made as well as the different tests and write down the reason of the adjustments. Did we say also to take pictures when you test your model? And here is your prototype.

Fifth: Collect your DATA. This means write down or record the results of the step four. Now think about how you can improve your prototype and make it better. Redesign your prototype according to your results.

Display Board
      The general rule is to present the hypothesis/ question/problem, background research and abstract on the left side of the board facing you, the experiments, tests, pictures, results and graphs in the center and on the right side you put the conclusion, application, future direction and references. Project title: Should be readable from across the room, well written, neat and catchy.
·         Abstract: Should fit in one page and summarize your work (question/hypothesis, reference to the materials and procedure, results, summary of your conclusion and short summary of your future directions) without the details.
·         Materials: numbered list of materials
·         Procedure: numbered and well explained steps. The steps must be presented in chronological order that another person can reproduce your experiment.
·         Conclusion: Should explain the data and doesn’t have to confirm the hypothesis. The best conclusion is open-ended and includes what can be done next.
Your display board should be well organized, neat and clear. Explain precisely and clearly what you want to do, how you did it, what did you find and what did you learn. Use the active voice (I measured, I added). Use the past tense to explain the procedure and the results, and the present tense for conclusion.
Fig3: Display board samples
Images copied from: (visited on January 31, 2014 @ 2:46 PM)

Science Fair Project Questions
1.     What color of candle burns the fastest?
2.     What kind of paper can float the longest?
3.     What shape of clay boat holds the most pennies before sinking?
4.     What happens to cookies when you leave out one ingredient?
5.     Which kind of cola do people really like the best? (blind taste test)
6.     Which kind of detergent washes the most stains out?
7.     What liquids in my house fizz when I add baking soda?
8.     What cleans a penny?
9.     How do different amounts of baking soda affect cookies?
10.  What food does my pet like best?
11.  How many seeds do different types of fruit produce?
12.  How do different style pencils or grips affect writing fatigue?
13.  What factors affect seed germination?
14.  What medium is best for seeds to sprout?
15.  What time of day does a hamster go through a maze faster?
16.  What type of food or type of birdfeeder attracts the most birds?
17.  How does smell affect taste?
18.  Is the heart rate of different animals and people the same after exercise?
19.  Which gun lasts the longest?
20.  What product works best to stop stinky feet?
21.  What temperature makes bread mold grow faster?
22.  How does egg substitute (or sugar substitute) change recipes?
23.  Which detergent is best for removing stains?
24.  What type of paper makes the best paper airplane?
25.  What is the best type of cup to keep drinks hot? or cold?
26.  Which type of chocolate melts fastest under a hot light?