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What is Temperature?

Science Fair Projects for Middle and High School


Temperature is the specific degree of hot or cold as measured by a thermometer or other standard scale. Exploring temperature makes for a great science project.

In this project you should note the two common scales of measuring temperature, Celsius and Fahrenheit. In the Fahrenheit scale, Daniel Fahrenheit arbitrarily decided that the freezing and boiling points of water would be separated by 180 degrees and he pegged freezing water at 32 degrees. So he made a thermometer, stuck it in freezing water, and marked the level of the mercury on the glass as 32 degrees. Then he stuck the same thermometer in boiling water and marked it 212 degrees. He then put 180 evenly spaced marks between those two points. In Celsius scale, Anders Celsius arbitrarily decided that the freezing and boiling points of water would be separated by 100 degrees and he pegged the freezing point of water at 0 degrees, and the boiling point at 100 degrees.

Project Ideas:

  1. Make a chart showing how to go from Celsius to Fahrenheit and back again.
  2. Make your own scale and show how to go from your scale to Celsius and Fahrenheit.
  3. Make your own thermometer.
  4. Use scientific thermometers to show that the boiling point of water is 212 degrees F, or that the freezing point is 32 degrees F. Then find out how many degrees it is to boil wax.
  5. Why the difference?
  6. Time how long it takes a household freezer to freeze water. What happens if you add salt to the water?

Link Resources to Complete the Science Fair Project

  1. Temperature Conversion
  2. Different Types of Temperature Calculators
  3. Current Temperature Contour Plot

Related Science Fair Project Resources

Quick Links: Science Fair Projects Ideas Index | High School Homework Help | High School Survival Guide

About These Science Fair Projects:

The science projects located here on the Parenting of Teens site at About.com are ideas developed by its Guide, Denise D. Witmer. Some are projects completed during her years of working with high school students, researched projects and others are original ideas. Please use these science fair ideas as a guide to help your teen complete a science project to the best of their ability. In your role as a facilitator, you should feel free to share this project with them, but not to do the project for them. Please do not copy these project ideas to your website or blog, post the link if you wish to share it.

Recommended Books for Science Fair Projects:

365 Simple Science Experiments with Everyday Materials
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The Scientific American Book of Great Science Fair Projects
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Strategies for Winning Science Fair Projects
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The Book of Totally Irresponsible Science: 64 Daring Experiments for Young Scientists
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