Ever go a little overboard with a school project?

Last year, I had an environmental science class in which we did a little simulation game. It was called ‘Fishbanks’ and basically we got in groups and had our own little ‘fishing companies’. Companies build/bought fishing boats, and sent them out each year to fish. The fish stocks were limited, and overfishing could exhaust them.

Now this was quite fun, and after being briefed on the rules, our company had a very wicked strategy- we were going to be the Big Bad Megacorporation. Our plan was to out-fish all the other companies, exhausting the fish stocks to deprive our competitors of profit.

Part of this plan involved buying fishing boats. See, it took a year to build them in the game, but if they were purchased from auctions they could be used that year. So it was actually worth it to pay more to be able to use the boats sooner (the game only lasted 10 ‘years’ so time was money!). We frequently strove to out-bid our opponents to get all the boats. At one point, me (our company representative) and the rep from a rival company were in a bidding war. The other girl kept raising her hand and then asking dumb questions which the teacher had already asked a zillion times. Thing is, when she was raising her hand, the teacher thought she was bidding and even when she said she was just asking a question, the current bidding price was getting confused and inflated. I was getting angry about this and told her she should save the questions for after class. She replied, “Why don’t YOU and your LAME-ASS company save your dumb comments for after class?” I stood up and boomed, “Our company will BURY YOU!” which stunned much of the class, including the teacher. This was war!

Sadly, despite our ambitions, we did very badly in the game :frowning: but it was due to bad investments. Because we were buying so many fishing boats, it forced other companies to go into debt to buy boats themselves to try to stay competitive. Since they were auctioned off, the value of fishing boats soared. However, when the fish stocks ran out, boats were just an expense (they cost money to maintain). And so since we had the most boats, we went bankrupt when we were unable to sell them off. Though, our actions did cause four other companies to get dragged down with us.

The teacher commented that our company was like a ‘dinosaur company’. Big and powerful, but unable to adapt to changing environments. I blame our loss on having the fish stocks getting exhausted much earlier than predicted, and internal conflicts with the company regarding yearly budgets.

Oh, I’m just a geek so I went overboard on all sorts of stuff.

Fifth grade science class: I come home jumping up and down in delight that I was assigned carbon for the element reports. (Ha! I got the base of life on earth! I win! YES!) Assignment- figure out what your element is and talk about some of what it’s good for. Include atomic weight and place in teh periodic table. What I turned in- 5-6 pages of a report on basic organic chemistry and the various forms of carbon including buckyballs.

Sixth grade science fair: I did research comparing several forms of alternative energy to traditional energy sources, both in current economics and efficiency as well as cutting edge technology and research grants. Very fun.

Seventh grade science class: The first project at my new school was to do a presentation on an invention. Some sort fo machine was suggested, because you had to include a diagram of how it worked, research its history, etc. Most of the class did stuff like tvs, cameras, one kid did a toaster, etc. I built a binary logic probe and taught the class binary. Demonstrated it on a stripped down computer from my basement. All very cool.


We were supposed to find out how much it would cost to plant, care for, and harvest 100 acres of corn for an agriculture class in high school. Then we were to find out how much the grain would sell for and see what the profit was.

We thought we could get around all the complications of caring for the corn and harvesting it (and thus not having to work as hard) by making our 100 acres into a corn maze. This idea totally backfired, because we had way too much fun designing the mazes and drawing them out. We made the whole acerage into 4 mazes, each having a theme. We designed a parking lot, thought about renting out wagons, strollers, and umbrellas, and invented a refreshment stand.

The project ended up taking us twice as long as the people who did the project as the teacher expected, but it was a lot of fun, and I think our project made the most profit.

I wrote a fairy tale about the fetal pig I dissected in HS biology.

I think I still have a copy floating around someplace.

In a 7th or 8th grade World History project, I took a map and glued it to a sheet of masonite, and drilled tiny holes in it at select places and wired a bunch of neon lights to a rotary controller. Then I taped a blurb about WWII from the beginning at Pearl Harbor forward in time noting various other key battles. The controller then showed (in a cheezy way) motion throughout the European and Pacific theaters. I used tiny flashbulbs for Hiroshima and Nagasaki. :rolleyes:

It wasn’t so much a project as an activity. In primary school we spent a week learning about China, and part of that involved bringing anything Chinese we had. As the only Chinese girl in the class, I considered it my responsibility to bring the most things.

It started out quite reasonably - on the first day I brought stuff like a fan, a small painting, etc. But after a couple of days I started running out of things to bring. So out came some porcelein figurines and toys that looked vaguely Oriental to me, and other similarly crappy stuff.

But then I even ran out of those. And now I considered it my duty to bring these things to class. So I resorted to looking around the house for items that had “Made In China” written on them. I found a little plastic horse and brought him in, and even at that young age I could tell the teacher was struggling to think of things to say about it.

Me: (shows stupid plastic farm horse to class)
Teacher: Well that’s … um, just lovely. So did you buy it in China?
Me: No. I bought it at K-Mart.


All I can say is Five-Assed Monkey.

Well, I blew up the chemistry lab once… (kidding)

In 9th grade back in Tanzania our history teacher recommended that we all do an “extra credit” research essay (although it turned out to not be all that optional after all). Minimum 1000 words, independent research, etc. Everybody did one, except for two people who couldn’t be bothered. I wrote six of them, I think.

(Hey, I was bored)

When I realized that I was going to lose the election in Civics class, I went underground, formed a death squad, and fought a bloody civil war all the way to the chalkboard and installed myself as president for life.

Which is all fine, but then my liuetenant couped me, which was just uncalled for. It’s like, there are other things than school you know.

When I was 14 in our English class we were asked to do a character dissection of Falstaff in Henry IV pt1. I went a little overboard… I came up with a really good idea…
Instead of just describing the character (boring!) I put on a courtroom drama with Falstaff being acccused of filching capons.
His devil’s advocate tried to plea with the judge and used character witnesses (all of the other characters in the play) who were examined and cross-examined.
What was originally meant to be a small character dissection turned into a wicked 12000 word essay. I was so pleased with it!

My first A-level (grade 13 ish ) chemistry corsework, was to do a poster on something chemical. I did mine on beer, in the shape of a pint of guiness. The teacher loved it. It as still on the wall when I left the school two tears later.

My senior year, we had “Science Fiction”, a senior elective that was intended to get seniors the easy english credits they needed. I took it for fun.

The final was a project. The class was devided into teams, and set about designing a colony project. One team for the planet, one team for the ship and shipboard life, one team for the colony industry and one team for colony leisure time.

After the arguement between the ship team (“We’re going to put microbombs in everyones head! No Mutniy!”) and the planet team (“The planet is just like Earth. Here’s some pictures.”) my best friend and I left the project, and did the whole thing ourselves, as a secondary group.

We set up a corporation, made colony applications, designed a ship that used hard science to the best of our ability…

Our planet was quite detailed, and had soem great touches… plants on our world had developed to deal with the different light frequencies, so they were purple and shades of purple, instead of green. The atmosphere had a high percentage of Noble gases in the upper atmosphere, and static discharge made the sky light up as the noble gases flouresced…

The colony base was made as a model, and the charter of the colony team was drawn up.

By the time we finished, people were in awe, and the teacher was stunned.

It was great.

In fourth grade or so, we had to make a poster and presentation describing the fauna and flora of a terrain (like tundra or marsh or whatever). Our trio made a beautiful poster, with colored pencil drawings copied out of coffe-table books. It took forever to do. Then we all memorized our entire speeches, which was like 10 notecards worth of stuff. Most I’ve ever memorized I think. We blew everyone else away, it wans’t even funny.

The other thing was that I always used to type my lab reports in school. Even back in the 5th or 6th grade, which was pretty damn early for that kind of thing. Word 1.0 for DOS kind of early. The upshot is that my lab reports in elementary school looked as good as the ones I did in college.

One time in high school I showed up to all of my classes every day for an entire week straight.

Oh there was that time I composed the Xmas medley for our holiday band concert. A ten min work for a 22 piece band. It started as a woodwind quartet but I suddenly started channeling Wagner.