There’s so much to learn in science. These fun science trivia facts will help your students learn something new while getting them excited about awesome science topics. Present these questions to your class, and see if they can answer correctly! We have trivia questions in general science, biology, chemistry, Earth science, physics, and STEM. It may just help your students win their next trivia game or make them a Jeopardy star! Plus, these science trivia facts make great bell ringers or extra credit questions.
1. What is the farthest planet from the sun?
Answer: Neptune. Uranus is the next farthest from the sun, and Mercury is the closest. Try out this planetary travel project.
2. What is the fastest land animal in the world?
Answer: A cheetah. Cheetahs can run over 75 miles per hour! Learn more about the top 10 fastest animals.
3. What idea is Charles Darwin most famous for?
Answer: Natural selection. Through natural selection, organisms adapt to their environment to better survive. Learning about natural selection? Check out this free simulation activity.
4. What type of clouds are the most fluffy and can be seen on sunny days?
Answer: Cumulus clouds. They look like cotton balls in the sky! Cumulus clouds can also bring thunderstorms. Learn more about the main types of clouds.
5. What color reflects light, and what color absorbs light?
Answer: White reflects light, and black absorbs light. This is why dark-colored objects, like pavement, heat up faster. Learn more about the science of color.
6. In what layer of the Earth do earthquakes occur?
Answer: Crust or upper mantle. The deepest earthquakes can happen at subduction zones where one tectonic plate dives below another one. Find out which earthquake statements are fact and which are fiction.
7. What space feature in our solar system is 26,000 light years away from the event horizon?
Answer: Black hole. There are over 200 billion stars in just our galaxy alone. Learn more about the structure and composition of our Milky Way galaxy.
8. Electronics still use energy when they are powered off but still plugged into an electrical outlet. What is this called?
Answer: Vampire electricity. Even if an electronic device is not in use, it’s best to unplug its charger from the wall completely to avoid wasting energy. Learn more about innovations that can help reduce household energy consumption.
9. How many phases does the moon go through every 29.5 days?
Answer: Eight. The moon cycles through the phase of a new moon all the way through to a waning crescent before it starts the process once more. Learn about all eight of the moon’s phases.
10. What tool do scientists use to measure properties of light over a specific portion of the spectrum?
Answer: Spectrograph. The first spectrograph was invented back in 1859 by a chemist and a physicist. Learn how to make your own spectroscope.
11. How did the Milky Way galaxy get its name?
Answer: Large, dark clouds. These clouds obscure the light of the billions of stars, giving it a milky glow. Explore more about the composition of galaxies.
12. What is the tough outer armor that shields the outside of a creature and allows it to move called?
Answer: Exoskeleton. Animals that have an exoskeleton include crabs, beetles, and arachnids. Learn more about bone facts and other types of skeletal systems.
13. What is the scientific study of algae called?
Answer: Phycology. This branch of biology, also known as algology, involves the study of the oceans’ seaweed ecosystems. Learn more about the importance of algae and its role in triggering the Great Oxidation Event.
14. What is the branch of study that examines how species in ecosystems are all interconnected?
Answer: Biodiversity. Changes in an ecosystem, like deforestation, can have major impacts on the species that depend on the ecosystem for survival. Learn more about the Earth’s wide variety of species and ecosystems.
15. What lowers the surface tension of water to make germs less likely to stick together?
Answer: Surfactants. When you wash your hands with soap, the soap binds water molecules and oil/germs together. Learn more about the emulsifying effect of soap.
16. What process is also known as “the human body clock”?
Answer: Circadian rhythm. Regular dark and light intervals within a 24-hour cycle influence how and when you sleep. Learn more about the body’s internal clock.
17. What is the name of the catalyst that speeds up the rate of a specific chemical reaction in a cell?
Answer: Enzyme. Without enzymes, life-sustaining processes would take too long to happen within cells. Learn more about practical applications of enzymes.
18. What is the smallest bone in the human body?
Answer: The staples. They are one of three tiny bones located in your ear. Learn more about the smallest bones of the body located in your ear.
19. Who was both a philosopher and scientist considered by some to be the first biologist?
Answer: Aristotle. Aristotle was an ancient Greek who studied both science and philosophy. His scientific studies included heredity, descent, and reproductions, where he discovered four means of reproduction. Learn more about Aristotle’s scientific studies.
20. What three components do plant cells have that animal cells do not?
Answer: Vacuole, chloroplast, and a cell wall. Plant cells and animal cells both have a nucleus, cytoplasm, mitochondria, and a cell membrane. Learn more about the differences in plant and animal cells.
21. How many stages are in a butterfly’s life cycle?
Answer: 4 stages. In metamorphosis, butterflies go through stages, including egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Get this free butterfly life cycle printable!
22. Where do plants get their energy from?
Answer: The sun. Plants make their own food by converting sunlight into sugar through a process called photosynthesis. Check out this light color effect on photosynthesis lesson for your classroom.
23. What is the transfer of waves or particles from one place to another called?
Answer: Radiation. Examples of radiation include light, sound, heat, and X-rays. Learn more about scientists’ research on radium and polonium.
24. What is the 5th most common element on the periodic table and is mainly found in stars?
Answer: Neon. Although neon is fairly common, it comprises only 0.0018% of the Earth’s atmosphere. Learn more about some of the elements found on the periodic table.
25. You may know that in photosynthesis, plants turn carbon dioxide into oxygen, but what other element is integral to this process?
Answer: Manganese. Without manganese, there would be no free oxygen on Earth. Learn more about how we can all breathe easier because of manganese.
26. What kind of reaction absorbs heat from its surroundings and makes things colder?
Answer: Endothermic. Examples of endothermic reactions include melting ice cubes and cooking an egg. Learn more about the difference between endothermic and endergonic reactions.
27. What famous exclamation about water displacement is Greek mathematician and physicist Archimedes credited for?
Answer: Eureka! Archimedes made the connection between volume and water displacement while taking a bath. Learn more about the practical applications of density.
28. What percentage of Earth’s total water is salt water?
Answer: 97%. The hydrosphere comprises all the water on Earth including groundwater, water locked up in glaciers, and the ocean. Learn about the geosphere, hydrosphere, and more with this free activity.
29. How many elements are there in the periodic table?
Answer: 118 elements. The framework of the periodic table we know today was developed by Dmitri Mendeleev in 1869. Try this fun periodic table of candy activity.
30. What is the name for the immediate conversion of solid matter to gas without becoming a liquid?
Answer: Sublimation. Sublimation is sometimes used in shirt printing, where an image is printed onto a sheet of paper, transferred to a fabric material, and heated until the ink absorbs into the fabric material. Try this awesome dry ice sublimation demonstration.
31. What is the only metal that is liquid at room temperature?
Answer: Mercury. Mercury has a super-low melting point! A big difference from other metals, it also does not conduct heat or electricity well. Learn more about the element mercury.
32. Which type of matter has a definite volume but no definite shape?
Answer: Liquid. Liquids will always conform to the shape of their container. In total, there are five total states of matter! Learn about the five states here.
33. A solution with a pH of 1 is considered to be what?
Answer: An acid. Solutions with a pH between 0 and 7 are considered to be acids, and solutions with a pH between 7 and 14 are bases. This disappearing-message activity teaches about pH.
34. What astrological occurrence causes the moon to align perfectly with the Earth and the sun and casts a shadow on a particular part of Earth?
Answer: Total solar eclipse. Studying eclipses helps scientists understand how the principles of physics dictate the behavior of celestial objects. Learn more about partial, annular, and total eclipses.
35. What term measures the greenhouse gases emitted by a person or an organization?
Answer: Carbon footprint. Greenhouse gases contribute to global warming by trapping gases like methane and carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Calculate your carbon footprint and learn more about how to reduce it.
36. What part of the ecosystem consists of soil and plays an important role in sustaining life?
Answer: The pedosphere. Soil can be made up of minerals, air, water, and organic matter. Learn about the factors affecting soil and the importance of soil in ecosystems.
37. What applied science subject incorporates plant science and aesthetics?
Answer: Horticulture. This branch of Earth science centers around the sustainable cultivation of decorative plants. Learn about fun and interesting careers in horticulture.
38. What event occurs in March and September when the hours of daylight and nighttime are the same?
Answer: Equinox. During these times, the Earth’s axis is not tilted toward the sun—it’s perpendicular. Learn more about the reasons for the seasons.
39. In order for the National Weather Service to declare a blizzard, how fast does the wind have to be gusting?
Answer: At least 35 miles per hour. A blizzard will also present with blowing or falling snow and visibility of a quarter mile or less. Learn more about how blizzards are classified.
40. What is every planet named after except for Earth?
Answer: A Roman or Greek god or goddess. The name “Earth” is of Old English and German descent, meaning “ground.” Learn more about naming planets.
41. How old is our Earth?
Answer: 4.5 billion years old. Rock samples are used to determine the age of our Earth! Learn more about how scientists calculate the age of Earth.
42. What is the most abundant gas in Earth’s atmosphere?
Answer: Nitrogen. Nitrogen makes up about 78% of Earth’s atmosphere. The second most abundant gas is oxygen, taking up about 20%. Learn more about Earth’s most abundant gases.
43. What is Earth’s primary source of energy?
Answer: The sun. The sun heats Earth’s land, water, and atmosphere. At 27 million degrees Fahrenheit, the sun is the Earth’s primary energy source. Learn more about how the sun gives off energy.
44. What is the coldest place on Earth?
Answer: Antarctica. The coldest temperature ever recorded on Earth was -128.6 degrees. Brrr! Learn more about Antarctica.
45. What force occurs when solid surfaces rub against each other with opposing motion?
Answer: Friction. Different objects have different amounts of friction depending on how rough or smooth the surface is. Learn more about kinetic friction with this pucks-to-socks activity.
46. Why do golf balls have dimples?
Answer: They reduce aerodynamic drag. Reducing drag makes the ball travel farther. Read more about the physics of golf.
47. What part of the human eye allows us to see wavelengths of light?
Answer: Cones. Human eyes contain three different color receptors called cones that each correspond to a different type of wavelength. Learn more about color receptors and the HSL color scheme.
48. When a quarterback throws a football, what makes it spiral?
Answer: Angular momentum. If something can spin or twirl, it has angular momentum. Learn more about the physics of football.
49. What scientific tool is often used to teach about static electricity?
Answer: A Van de Graaff generator. This tool uses a moving belt to accumulate electric charge. Learn how to use and troubleshoot a generator.
50. What type of scientist uses tools and methods to design, create, and maintain computer software?
Answer: Software engineer. Software engineers are needed in almost every industry. Learn more about computer programmers and computer scientists.
51. What is the name of the group of famous laws Isaac Newton identified?
Answer: Laws of motion. Newton has three different laws of motion that were first presented in 1686. Learn more about the physics of a fidget spinner using the laws of motion.
52. What is the fastest speed known in the universe?
Answer: The speed of light. Did you know the speed of light travels at 299,792,458 meters per second? That’s fast! Learn more about how fast the speed of light is.
53. What is the name of the Nobel Prize-winning physicist responsible for the theory of relativity?
Answer: Albert Einstein. Within the same year, 1922, Einstein proved this theory of relativity and won a Nobel Prize! Learn more fun facts about Albert Einstein.
54. What was the device called that first recorded sound?
Answer: A phonograph. It was invented by Thomas Edison in 1877, and the first recorded song was “Mary Had a Little Lamb.” Learn more about the phonograph and recording sound.
55. What is the unit for measuring electric power?
Answer: Watts. Utility companies use watts to measure energy consumption, and the number of watts can also be found on light bulbs! Learn more about measuring in watts.
56. What do you call the series of numbers where each value is determined by the two values directly before it?
Answer: Fibonacci sequence. The Italian mathematician introduced the 0-9 Hindu-Arabic number system in 1202. Discover more about the Fibonacci sequence.
57. What is the special name for a date on the calendar that is written the same forwards and backwards?
Answer: Palindrome Days. Palindrome Days are dates like March 20, 2023 (3202023) and April 20, 2024 (4202024). Learn about how palindromes exist in nature.
58. Where and when was the first Pi Day celebration held?
Answer: San Francisco in 1988. The Guinness record for most digits of pi to be memorized is 70,000 digits in less than 10 hours. Explore eight fun ways to celebrate Pi Day.
59. Who is recognized as the father of nuclear physics?
Answer: Ernest Rutherford. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1908. Check out the amazing accomplishments of other famous scientists.
60. In which competitive sport do people use navigational skills to travel to various planned-out locations?
Answer: Orienteering. Enthusiasts can rely on compasses and/or computer technology to help them on their quests. Learn about magnetic declination and Oersted’s Law.