Secondary School Science Project on Freshwater Plankton

Hello everyone! This is an announcement related to parents of KS3 students (or 13+ if it’s more appropriate) who wants to increase chances of their children to be accepted to universities or simply get acquainted with real science – its positive and negative sides.

“Science for kids” recently achieved a serious milestone – our paper was accepted for publication in peer reviewed Journal of Emerging Investigators ( The title of this paper is “Difference in the effect of Copper Sulphate on the mortality rate of two classes of freshwater crustaceans — Ostracod and Daphnia” and it is devoted to toxicological aspects of some ecologically active chemical affecting freshwater plankton and food chain.

Because of that we are planning to expand our research further into ecological direction. We are inviting anyone interested in such research to join. Our 2-hour classes (in groups of 4-6 people) carried out weekly at one of participants home with many experiments conducted as homework. All necessary equipment is provided by us but owning a microscope at home is advised but not compulsory. Homework experiments will involve maintaining a culture of microscopic freshwater crustaceans (Daphnia) in small aquariums and some manipulation with them. Chemicals used are not harmful for humans. Series of experiments will be then statistically analysed, discussed, and written down as a report. In a best case scenario these reports will be combined into a new scientific paper that we will aim to publish. There is no 100% guarantee for publication in journal (it’s science) but our experience proves it as possible.

Such a paper can be a serious boost for university acceptance chances. When it is about popular university subjects like medicine, natural sciences, math, etc competition for places at highly ranked universities can be quite fierce. Often at the level of personal statements or interviews with prospective students, decisions made based on their extracurricular activities and having previous involvement into scientific process may be highly beneficial. Currently it is getting harder to secure placement for work experience in real laboratory and many pupils have too vague impression of scientific work. We can provide such an experience on smaller but realistic scale.

If you have a teenager who might be interested in such project, or you know someone else with similar interests – please spread the word and let us know. By the end of August, we will be forming working groups and schedule so earlier response will let us estimate number of potential participants, organize things in advance because places and time slots are limited. We are especially interested in people who can provide accommodation for our classes. In return we offer a discount to hosting family!   

Thank you for reading this to the end. We are looking forward to hearing from future scientists!