Science Project:

Does Eating a Hearty Breakfast Before an Exam Yield Better Scores?

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Research Questions:

Which part of the brain controls memory? Is there a specific part?

Memory is controlled by the brain and is intangible. It is a person's ability to store, retain, and recall information and experiences. It is said that a person's memory significantly gets poorer with age. That is why the elderly tend to not remember things very well.

Materials:

  • Number memory test
  • Overhead projector & transparencies for the memory test
  • Paper for your test subjects to write on
  • Test subjects (at least 10, the more you have, the more accurate your results will be!)
  • Pen/pencil for notes

Experimental Procedure

  1. Separate your test subjects evenly into 2 groups, randomly. One of these groups will have a hearty breakfast in the morning before taking the memory test and the other group will not have breakfast (make sure of this).
  2. Have all your test subjects gather in a classroom to prepare for the test.
  3. Project random numbers on the overhead projector for 30 seconds.
  4. Take the transparency off the projector and ask your test subjects to write down all the numbers in order that they can remember in space #1.
  5. Continue projecting numbers until you reach 10 sets of numbers (or however many you wish.)
  6. Repeat the above at least twice weekly. One thing to remember is to alternate which group has breakfast and which group does not, but keep the members in the groups the same throughout.
  7. Evaluate the performance of the group members. How many did they get correct? Is there a dramatic difference between groups?
  8. Record your results.

Suggested Chart

Avg. # of correct answers

Notes

Hearty Breakfast

No Breakfast

Terms/Concepts: Memory; Sensory memory; Short term memory; Long term memory

References:

Fivush, Robyn and Neisser, Ulric (1994). The remembering self: Construction and accuracy in the self-narrative. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Author: Sofia PC
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