If your school is considering making the transition to digital science fair boards, read on to learn about the many benefits this provides to middle and high school students.
My world was turned upside down this year when our district decided to use digital science fair boards in place of the traditional tri-fold boards .
I had spent years helping students cut and paste their projects together on a tri-fold board, so naturally, I was skeptical about using a digital display.
I’m happy (and slightly shocked) to share that after piloting digital science fair display boards in our classroom this year, it was an amazing experience.
Digital science fair displays have so many benefits!
I can’t imagine ever going back to the traditional science fair board!
What is a digital science fair board?
Digital science fair boards are a modern twist on the traditional tri-fold display board.
Think of it as an online platform that allows students to create and present their research in a visually appealing way.
Digital display boards make it easier for students to insert and share high quality images, graphs, and even videos to help explain scientific concepts and bring their project to life.
Best of all, they are convenient, customizable, and easy to share with judges and other students.
5 Benefits digital science fair boards offer to students.
1. Digital boards are a huge time saver!
When the time came to put together the digital science fair display, my students already had their project completed and saved in a Google Doc.
This meant projects were ready to go – all they needed to do was cut and paste text!
Imagine, not having to print or retype your procedure or abstract!
Creating a digital display board can be faster and more efficient than creating a physical one. Gone are the days of typing, printing, cutting, and regluing when students make mistakes and need to make changes to their board!
Now, students can easily make changes and corrections on the spot, without having to reprint or recreate the entire board!!
2. It’s easy to give feedback on digital science fair boards.
As students were putting together their digital science fair board, I was able to give feedback as they were working.
Students can take advantage of this real-time feedback through Google to make corrections and improve their project and really shine!
Quick Tip: If students are using Google Docs or Slides, they can assign a comment to a specific person. This was a HUGE advantage when my students had a question or needed feedback. To do this, just select “add comment” in the toolbar and use the + or @ email address to assign it to a specific person.
3. Last-minute fixes are so easy!
Without fail, every year students turn in their final board with last-minute mistakes that need to be fixed! Virtual science fair boards have eliminated this problem entirely!
Now, with some guidance, students can quickly sit down and make any last minute changes to their project!
4. Sharing and collaboration is simple.
Students are busier than ever!
They are immersed in after school sports, lessons, and other activities that make it difficult for partners to get together and put together their tri-fold board on a weekend.
Students can easily collaborate with partners thanks to the magic of technology! They can easily share their work online, get feedback, and collaborate in real time!
5. Digital boards are cost-effective and environmentally friendly.
Depending on the topic, science fair projects can get pricey.
Traditional science boards can be more expensive than digital boards. Once you factor in the cost of the tri-fold board, construction paper, stickers, lettering, and even lights!!! – this all quickly adds up!
Digital boards also do not require printing material, which is always better for the environment!
How to make a digital science science fair board.
First, choose the program for creation. Students are most familiar with PowerPoint, Google Slides, and Canva.
If your district requires you to print the board for display, change the slide size to 48 x 36 inches. If not, a standard slide size of 4:3 will work.
Students can then create their science fair headings using text boxes, then copy and paste the information from their project into the slide.
Digital science fair boards can still be printed (if needed)
Our district science fair requires our digital boards to be printed for display and attached to a tri-fold board.
If your district requires a printed poster mounted on a traditional tri-fold board (48×36 inches),it’s easy to do! Just set the slide parameters to the new size in your program (Google Slides, Canva, etc).
Many schools have a poster machine, which makes it very easy to print. Just save the completed image as a .jpg and print.
If your school does not have a poster machine, Staples, Office Depot, and the FedEx store all offer this service for a small fee.
What is the best way to attach the printed poster to the board?
This year, my students tried several methods for attaching their poster to the board. I’ve seen glue dots, glue sticks, double sided tape, and binder clips.
All worked well, but a word of caution – using too much glue on the back caused the paper to wrinkle on the front.
Binder clips were by far the easiest method for attaching the paper to the board! Students were able to carry their trifold and rolled up poster to the science fair, and then clip it in place. I wish I had thought of this earlier, and will definitely be using this next year!
How a Digital Science Fair Template Saved Time and Stress
My students found the idea of starting with a blank slide daunting.
Even though my students are tech savvy, they struggled with organizing the vast amount of information on their slide.
Even after typing all of the information on the board, it was difficult to read.
Fonts and sizes were not consistent, spacing was off, and the headings were not organized in a logical manner.
My solution was to create an easy to use template to provide students with a structured and organized layout to present their digital science fair projects.
This template was a life-saver and students were able to plug in their research information, add images, tables, and data charts.
Best of all, the template was 100% customizable, so students are able to put their personal touch on their project!
I created this template to provide my students with a structured and organized way to present their digital science fair projects.
This template is completely editable, yet provides students with a framework to display their project in a clear and concise manner.
- Editable template in 10 colors to get students started
- Available in PPT and Google Slides formats
- 2 Size formats (standard slide and 48 x 36 inch to print and mount on a tri-fold board)
- Teacher tips for successful projects
Don’t wait! Get your Digital Science Fair Board Templates today.
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