I was a science fair nerd from the 3rd to 10th grade, so I can say with certainty that I put my parents through seven years of unabridged science fair hell. Parents who are working on those projects now, can you imagine? Seven years of what you’re doing right now?
Hopefully this post offers you some solace, because your cursing of the science-fair-powers-that-be is not unique. In fact, I’ve been watching science fair rage trickle across my social media feeds all week, and hearing about it for decades (from, ahem…my mom). So if you’re one of these frustrated parents, just know that you’re not alone. There are many, many others trying to guide their children to success on this required and often exhausting homework project.
I do have mixed feelings about science fairs, because as a student I loved learning about science through my participation in the fair. However, I should be clear: that only happened AFTER I was being guided by actual scientists for my projects. We’ll get to that in a moment.
What you should know is that the frustration you’re feeling as a parent (or are about to feel) is normal and officially generations old. Parents or not, most of us understand this feeling since we also remember what it was like as kids to put these projects together. I’m going to go out on a limb here and hypothesize (oh-ho-ho!) that the whole process was nearly as ridiculous then, as it is today.