- Make a Collection of photos/drawings of things wiggling under a microscope, and that were found in your own backyard, tap water, body, a pet's body, skin, floor, bedding, plants, swimming pool, lake, etc. What are they? Are they dangerous or helpful?
- How do antibiotic-resistant "super bugs" develop? Which harmful ones are known to have developed from non-pathogenic variants? How do new variants develop?
Light Use and Production by Living Things
- Some animals and plants glow! Why do some jellyfish have rows of moving colored lights down their bodies? Why do some fins in the dark depths of the ocean glow? Does anyone know why some fungi glow at night? Are they also doing it in the daylight?
- If you buy fluorescent fish at the store, do they pass on that trait to their young? How did the fish become fluorescent?
- How do different living things respond to different colors of light?
- We can control flowering pumpkins growing indoors by changing the lights over them. Can you experiment to see if some other kind of plant (pick a fast grower!) responds as pumpkins do, making a male vs. female flowers depending on which kind of grow light is above them?
Animals and Plants
- Example: The Portuguese Man o' War: this "individual" comes together from 4 different types of polyps, making it a colonial animal of "siphonophore". How does that happen?
- Venom resistance: How can some creatures not be stung by stinging tentacles of other creatures? Why can sea slugs eat creatures with venomous spines, and pass the intact spines through their bodies to become the slug's venomous spines?
- Compare the effects of different fertilizers, or amount of light, or colors of light, exposure to morning vs. afternoon vs. noon sunshine, or amounts of water or watering methods, or different soils. (If doing an Experiment, don't forget to have a Control and only ONE variable!)
- Compare methods of treating pests and diseases. Pick one plant, one pest, or one disease, and try different methods.
- Biologists rank living things in a hierarchy: Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species. How do scientists decide what are the same or different from the same species? Sometimes, based on different appearances, members of the same species have been thought to be different species, or genera, or even families!
- How do multiple species develop from a common ancestor? Evolution or non-evolution of a type of plant or animal?
- What evidences exist that all living things are related to each other? Is there evidence against this?
- Are there real proto-human ancestors int he fossil record?
- Whales, porpoises, and other marine mammals: Evidences that they have or have not evolved from a land animal
- Evidences that birds have/have not developed from dinosaurs, or from something else
- Instincts: inborn behaviors: what instincts do animals have, and where could those inborn behaviors have come from? (Example: walking, flying, finding appropriate food and eating, migrating, caring for their young, or creating a nest).
- Make a Model and compare the heart and circulatory system between different kinds of living things. Could such changes evolve from class of creature into another, and not kill the creature in the process?
- Bio-mimicry: How are scientist finding "nature's" solutions to needs and applying them to human life? (Examples: the umbrella was inspired by the bat wing; adhesives inspired by the properties of barnacles).
- How many different ways do plants and animals reproduce themselves?
- How do cells reproduce themselves? What cells do not reproduce? Why not?
- Germination of seeds: what affects it for a particular plant?
- How can some animals change gender?