Sixth-grade experiments can deal with electricity.
Sixth-grade students tend to enjoy playing with electricity. Take them beyond batteries and aluminum foil and advance them to more complex experiments. Teach them to make everything from an electroscope to an electronic buzzer. Not only will they enjoy the science projects, they will learn more about electricity and they will remember it longer.
Poke a hole in the center of the bottom of a clear, plastic cup with a paper clip. Form the paper clip into a J. Cut two one-inch by one-inch strips of aluminum foil. Place the foil on the paper clips by poking a hole in the foil with a paper clip. Let the foil hang down on the paper clip. Poke the paper clip through the hole in the cup, leaving the J with the foil on the inside of the cup. Roll a piece of Playdough around the middle of the paper clip and keep the paper clip from falling through the hole. Make a ball of aluminum foil and place it on the top of the paperclip. Charge a balloon by rubbing a piece of wool on it. Bring the balloon near the foil ball and watch the reaction of the strips of aluminum foil.
Gather a 1.5 volt battery, a large iron maul and two feet of insulated copper wire. wrap the center of the insulated wire around the nail, covering the length of the nail. Strip the ends off of the copper wire. Connect one end of the wire to the bottom of the battery and one end to the top of the battery. Use the electromagnet to pick up metal objects, like paper clips.
Use a battery, a resistor, wire and a switch to create a simple electric circuit. Sixth-grade students will complete a complete loop from the battery, through the wire and the switch, through the resistor and back to the battery. Have students conduct simple circuits and parallel circuits.
Trace around a penny to make a pattern. Use it to cut eight circles from aluminum foil and paper towel. Place the paper circles in a bottle with vinegar and salt. Tape a loose wire to a penny and tape an other end to one of the foil circles. Place the foil with the wire on a small plate. Put a paper circle over the circle on the plate. Cover it with a penny. Continue building a stack with the same rotation: foil, paper, coin. Place the penny with the wire on top of the stack. Touch the other ends of the battery to a buzzer.