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Our First Science Fair Project

This year for Science Society, Jack had to participate in the Science Fair! I managed to talk him out of a complex shrimp-breeding plan and convinced him to do a simple-ish water-testing experiment. We tested 5 home aquariums, 5 wild ponds, and 5 pet store tanks and compared which had the best water quality for fish to live in. We used water quality test strips and an ammonia test kit that we ordered off of Amazon, and got to it!

The complexity of this project wasn't so much in what we were doing, but in how many placed we had to go and tanks we had to find. The wild ponds were easy--there was no one to ask permission or anything as long as the January weather cooperated. We had a few really nice days that Jack and I got to have some one-on-one time going to different ponds and testing the water. 

The home tanks were a little trickier--I ended up asking all the other moms at elementary school pick up if anyone had any tanks and we walked around the neighborhood testing Jack's classmate's tanks one afternoon. Herding an excited group of kids around the neighborhood and going to everyone's houses was quite a chore! 

I was apprehensive about the pet stores and worried that they wouldn't want us to test their tanks, but we didn't have any problems at all! I had an empty solo cup that I asked an employee to fill with tank water, then we just sat on the floor and did our testing without any of us actually having to mess with the store's tank. I think Jack's clipboard and cute smile helped! 

Here were the results! The Wild had the best water quality, home tanks were second, and pet stores were the worst.