School Science Fair Project Ideas: Spiders

Explore the World of Spiders at the Science Fair

A spider web covered in dew.
A spider web covered in dew.. GUY Christian / Images

When it comes to a middle or high school science fair project, there are many topics to choose from. One that is sure to get some attention is a project about spiders!

Many people have a fear of spiders though they are important to the ecosystem. Explaining the benefits of spiders and what makes them special is the perfect beginning for a memorable science fair display.

What is a Spider?

Before you get started on a spider science project, it is important to know what one is...

Most people think spiders are insects but scientists classify spiders as arachnids. Insects are different from arachnids in a number of ways.

  • Spiders have eight legs while ants, bees, beetles and other insects have only six legs.
  • Most insects have wings or antennae which are feelers. Spiders do not have either.
  • Arachnids also include daddy long legs, scorpions, mites and ticks.
  • Scientists classify spiders as either true spiders or Tarantulas. This is due to differences in their bodies such as the way their fangs point and move.

Spider Science Fair Project Ideas

There are many fascinating points about spiders that can make great science fair material. Here are a few ideas:

  1. How long do spiders live? Explore the life cycle of a spider and how they reproduce.
  2. How many different types of spiders are there? What are the most common in your area? Show photos of them.
  3. Do all spiders have fangs? Explain why spiders have fangs and what they are used for.
  1. Are all spiders poisonous? Demonstrate how to tell harmful and helpful spiders apart.
  2. What is a spider's web made out of? What is the general shape of a web? Do all spiders spin webs? Make models of different types of webs.
  3. How strong is a spider's web? Gather webs and do a strength experiment.
  4. Why are people afraid of spiders? Is there a way to overcome this fear by understanding what spiders give back to the environment?

    Can You Bring Live Spiders to School?

    A live spider can add a dramatic effect to the science fair project, however, it is not always possible or necessary to include one in the display. This is especially true if you want to show off your pet tarantula!

    If you are thinking about including a live spider as part of the project, check with your teacher first. Some schools have a policy regarding live animals at the science fair. Also, teachers may have had experiences in which they learned that it is not a good idea (like the spiders that escaped three years ago).

    In the cases where it is allowed, your teacher can also give you advice on how to display and contain your spider. Remember that spiders are living creatures and it is just as important for their safety as it is for the people attending.

    5 Resources for a Spider Science Fair Project

    Any good project begins with research. Read these articles about spiders to find the information you need or explore more topic ideas.

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