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Know of any good science kits?

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I like Science Wiz. But imo, a 10 year old would benefit from help, because there is quite a bit of written explanation. Our favorite kit has been Charges, which has a home made Van de Graaff generator.


We also like the K'nex engineering kits, especially the Bridges one. You can purchase quite comprehensive teacher guides separately. Easy to use independently. I would recommend a camera, so you have a record of the creations, as you will have to take some apart in order to build all the designs.


Snap Circuits are easy to use, but kids are apt to snap the components together without thinking much what it means. YMMV.


Home Science Tools has an excellent selection of commercial kits, plus kits they put together themselves.


Acorn Naturalists has nature and geology kits.


Delta Science in a Nutshell is a selection of kits. But they are pricey. You have to look very carefully to make sure that your kit is not full of baking soda and suchlike. (Kits are designed for teachers.)


One of the smartest things I did was put together a Science box. It has paper plates, aluminum pie tins, plastic cups, 1 liter bottles, a soda can, a glass coffee jar with a plastic top, a wide mouthed jar just big enough for a hard boiled egg to go through the opening, balloons, ping pong balls, thumbtacks, paper clips, paper fasteners. I can't remember everything, but that is some of it. I also have a tool kit that is reserved for science -- scissors, mini pliers and screwdrivers, that sort of thing. Before I did that, there was always a frantic search for 'common household items.'


Edited to correct spelling of Van de Graaff

Edited by Alessandra
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I especially like the Thames and Kosmos kits. Most are available on Amazon, and if you sort through the reviews, you can usually get a good idea of which ones will work best. Using that method, I have managed to completely avoid any duds so far!

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In addition to the Snap Circuits and Thames & Kosmos kits mentioned above:


Monthly subscription kits:

Tinker Crates

Groovy Lab in a Box

Genius Box


Fishertechnik: Universal 3 (makes 70 different reusable models)


K'Nex smaller kits are about $40-45 each: 

- Intro to Structures: Bridges

- Intro to Simple Machines: Gears

- Intro to Simple Machines: Pulleys and Levers

- Intro to Simple Machines: Wheels, Axels and Inclined Planes


K'Nex bigger kits run $150+

- Forces Energy and Motion

- Renewable Energy Set

- Real Bridge Building Set


Make -- guides, kits, projects, blog/online articles

Edited by Lori D.
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Did anyone mention TOPS Science kits? They have projects for a range of ages, and the books are easy to follow. All the books are available as downloads as well as books, and online samples and equipment lists for each book are provided. You can order less common items (say, eyedroppers) from the site as part of a kit for each book or as individual items.


IMO, TOPS does very well at keeping costs down. We followed the electricity and were able to make an electric circuit using wire we made from aluminum foil. One reason I like TOPS is that it has a non commercial feeling. (TOPS is a nonprofit.)


Another source -- perhaps for older kid -- is Janice van Cleeve books. But you would need to supply your own materials and kept a lookout. When my kids were in first grade, we did a project on oceans that involved blue food dye. I controlled the dye bit, lol.

Edited by Alessandra
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How about Little Passports Science Expedition? My DD 12 got the subscription from her grandma, and really enjoys doing them.


I see that Homeschool Buyers Co-op has a group buy discount starting August 28th for this.  I think I might be jumping on board.

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