The girls entered projects in the school Expo. They could do a science project, or data collection, or history, or fine arts. I gave them several ideas, and I really thought Sarah would decide to do something with her shell collection. But, Abby wanted to do something "pretty," so she decided to do a rainbow experiment. Sarah tossed around several ideas and finally decided to write a poem and make it into a book.
Abby drew a rainbow in poster board; all the colors were in the proper order, except that she added pink between the red and the orange because it HAD to have pink in it!. We printed a picture of a double rainbow we saw a few weeks ago, and then we bought a prism to make a rainbow. But we couldn't make it work. I guess it works best in a dark room, and maybe we could have made it work with a box, but I knew that Abby wouldn't be happy with that. She wanted to show off her rainbow. So I got a CD and showed her how it could make a rainbow. At first, she wasn't impressed; she said it was "cheating" because she could see a rainbow even without the flashlight. We had to go into a dark room and show her that there was only a rainbow in the light. Then she was happy. She taped the CD onto the poster board and set up the flashlight. DONE. Except that she needed to write a page outlining her hypothesis and process and conclusion. It took her 2 hours to write that page - she did not want to do it. Finally it was done, and it looked awesome. So awesome, in fact, that she won 3rd place in her category.
Sarah wrote a poem called "Reindeer's Christmas Cheer." She made it up and I wrote it down as she talked. Then she took each stanza and put it on a page and drew a reindeer on each page and created a big book. It was awesome. I took it to Kinkos to get it bound, which was a debacle, but it all worked out. She won 2nd place in her category.
All in all, it was a great experience for them. Really the first contest they ever entered. I was so proud of the way they worked on their projects and took pride in making them "perfect."