Sara Miller | Independent Fourth grader Rowan Frazier stands in front her science project: Which potato chip is greasier?

South Colby science fair building student’s curiosity

By SARA MILLER

Kitsap News Group

The annual science fair is a time-honored tradition in school. It’s a time for the best and brightest to showcase their curiosity and knowledge.

Projects including the growth of mold on different kinds of bread, the varied levels of sugar in soda and the classic potato light bulb were presented March 14 at South Colby Elementary School’s annual science fair.

One top student, fourth-grader Rowan Frazier, studied what potato chips are the greasiest. She tested Tim’s Potato Chips, Lay’s and Ruffles by pulverizing chips and soaking their oil on grid sheets, and then counting each square the oil seeped into.

“My conclusion was that Tim’s were the greasiest,” Frazier said. “I thought it was going to be Lay’s because I thought they looked bigger and shinier.”

Frazier said she chose this project because she wanted to see how much grease was actually in potato chips, especially her favorites — Ruffles.

“They taste better to me,” she said.

Frazier worked on this project for about a week before presenting it to her classmates, teachers and judges in the South Colby gymnasium.

Other projects included a Gummy Bear Osmosis Lab, which measured how much the ubiquitous liquid candy treat can absorb; a helmet safety test by dropping watermelons on a bike helmet, a skate helmet, a batting helmet and a motorcycle helmet; a demonstration of which popcorn produces the most unpopped kernels; paper airplane aerodynamics; and different showcases demonstrating how plants grow.

“Science projects are important because we learn how science can affect the world,” Frazier said.

While science discovery projects are an important aspect of every student’s career, they present their learning opportunities packaged in colorful projects and findings.

But for one student, the science fair has its own practical challenges. Other than designing the project, the hardest part for Frazier? “Cleaning up the mess.”