At our school, the annual science fair is a big deal.
My 13 year-old daughter Fae had been mulling over her idea for months. Originally, she wanted to test whether a Wi-Fi network has an effect on plant growth. As with any research project, her first step was to find out what previous research has to say on this topic. However, Fae found very little research online or in books, so she asked her teacher. Her teacher recommended talking to an expert in field, perhaps someone from Extension. Lucky for Fae, I work for Extension and had the inside scoop on someone she could talk with — Sam Bauer, Extension educator in horticulture.
Squashing Japanese beetles with a greens roller might be my second favorite pastime pic.twitter.com/RbRK7VoqdC— UMN Turf Extension (@urbanturfmn) August 5, 2016
Fae sent Sam an email with her questions, and he conferred with his colleagues, then explained to Fae the difficulty of controlling for all possible variables to really be able to know the true effect, if any, of a Wi-Fi network on plant growth. Sam offered an alternative idea: testing how varying soil temperatures affects plant growth.