The early learning years are great ones for inspiring a love of and interest in science. Children are inherently curious about the way the world works. They love to ask questions and to explore learning in a hands-on way. Science kits make terrific learning tools for the pre-school, elementary and middle grade years when learning by doing can provide a fun and solid foundation for future learning. And these days, the quality and variety of science kits makes finding those learning opportunities both easy and fun. Below is a list of some of the best-selling science kits for kids, ages 4-12.
1. Scientific Explorer My First Mind Blowing Science Kit
It can be easy to spark an interest in science in pre-school and early elementary aged children, especially when you have resources like the POOF-Slinky My First Mind Blowing Science Kit, by Scientific Explorer. Recommended for children ages 4 and up, with adult supervision, the kit comes with materials and ideas for about a dozen experiments, including those involving an erupting volcano and color changing crystals. Some of the experiments will require basic household items that aren’t included.
2. POOF-Slinky Scientific Explorer, Tasty Science Kit
Children 8 and up will delight in the POOF-Slinky Tasty Science Kit, also by Scientific Explorer. There’s no place more fun to learn scientific concepts than the kitchen, and this kit, which comes with recipes and ingredients as well as activity cards and lab equipment, will let kids eat some of the fruits of their scientific exploration. Rock candy, fizzy drinks and cake are some of the tasty treats they’ll get to make and learn from too.
3. POOF-Slinky Scientific Explorer Sci-Fi Slime Science Kit
Kids 10 and up will have a slimy time learning about hydrophilic polymers with the POOF-Slinky Sci-Fi Slime Science Kit, by Scientific Explorer. The kit comes with directions and materials needed for kids to mix, measure, and handle a variety of slimes, from magnetic to color changing to glow-in-the dark. Some kids love the gooey, slightly gross factor that only slime can bring to science!
4. The Magic School Bus – Chemistry Lab
Any child who ever enjoyed watching the Magic School Bus will know that Mrs. Frizzle always made learning fun! That fun continues in the Magic School Bus Chemistry Set, which comes in a schoolbus shaped carrier. 51 experiment cards are included to inspire chemistry learning in children ages 5-12. They’ll learn to measure things, use litmus paper, do chromatography, make a volcano and much more. You’ll need to add some basic household materials, but the kit does come with some necessary materials and three organizing trays.
5. Scientific Explorer Magic Science for Wizards Only
You can add some magic to learning time with POOF-Slinky’s Magic Science For Wizards Only Kit, another innovative kit by Scientific Explorer. Fortunately, you don’t really have to be a wizard to have fun with this kit. Children 6 and up and their adult helpers will love learning the scientific concepts that make certain “magical” activities work. The kit includes materials for several exciting projects, including wand caps and a clear tube so a child can enjoy making their own magic wand!
6. 4M Crystal Mining Kit
Budding geologists can go mining for crystals in 4M’s Crystal Mining Kit. Adults can help children 5 and older dig into the included plaster rock that comes embedded with crystals. The kit comes with a digging tool and brush to help young geologists dislodge all eight crystals, as well as a case in which to display their colorful treasures once they’ve observed them carefully. You’ll also find a magnifying glass and some facts about the crystals.
7. 4M Magnet Science Kit
4M’s Magnet Science Kit provides kids 8 and up with the opportunity to learn the principles behind magnets. Using the various kinds of magnets included, such as bars, rings and other components, kids will make magnetic sculptures, construct a yacht compass, make a magnet wand and perform several other experiments and games. The kit even contains chassis, wheels and axles so kids can put together a magnetic racer.
8. Elenco Electronic Snap Circuits, Jr. Kit
The illustrated manual and 30 electrical parts that come with Elenco’s Electronic Snap Circuits, Jr. Kit give children 8 and up the chance to build a hundred different projects. Flashing lights, a siren and a working photo sensor are some of the models they’ll design and build with parts such as circuits, speakers and switches that snap together without any other required tools. All you need to add is batteries, which aren’t included.
9. 4M Weather Station Kit
Some children are absolutely fascinated by weather, and they’ll be well served by 4M’s Weather Station Kit. It comes with a thermometer, rain gauge, a wind vane, an anemometer and other tools, including everything a child needs to build a terrarium. Kids 8 and up will learn to observe and record information about the weather.
10. Thames & Kosmos Crystal Growing
This beautiful Crystal Growing Kit by the respected company Thames & Kosmos provides materials and full-color instructions for 15 projects. The crystals included in the kit are four different chemical types, which promotes diverse learning for children 10 and up as they create, experiment and observe with these lovely materials. The kit even comes with dyes so kids can customize colors for their crystals. This popular kit has sold over a million units around the world.