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Encouraging science exploration is one of our goals at Home Science Tools, and we get to do some exploring ourselves when we evaluate new products. After trying out many products over the years, we've developed some favorites. Here are a few of our top picks that we recommend for families and teachers looking for hands-on ways to make science more enjoyable. (Click on any product title or image for a full description and ordering information.)
AntWorks. We enjoyed having ants as office pets for more than three months with this kit! More fun than a traditional ant farm, AntWorks uses a special see-through nutrient gel so that the ants in this "space-age" habitat don't need to be fed! A magnifying glass is included, so you can view ants up close as they chew and dig their way through the gel.
Bacteria Study Kit. Studying bacteria is a company favorite! You don't need a microscope to observe fascinating bacteria colonies. With this kit, you can grow your own bacteria cultures, experiment with how household cleaners affect bacteria growth, and more. We provide 20 petri dishes and nutrient agar for growing bacteria, plus alcohol, iodine, sterile swabs, blotter paper, disposable bags, and instructions.
Butterfly Garden. This classic kit makes for a perfect family project! Get Painted Lady larvae with their food and watch them transform from caterpillar to chrysalis to adult butterfly in approximately three weeks. You can hang the handy pop-up habitat where everyone can see. Everyone in your family, from the youngest to the oldest, will be fascinated by the lifecycle of the butterfly.
Home Microscope. We're
confident of the quality of our Home Science
Tools microscope line, especially the affordable, family-friendly Home model.
The high-quality glass optics are much better than any toy microscope, and you
get magnification levels of 40x, 100x, and 400x - powerful enough to use for a
high school or college biology course. It also has features like cool
fluorescent lighting, fine and coarse focusing, and a sturdy metal frame.
Rock Hound's Backpack Kit. This deluxe kit was designed for kids who like rocks. It comes with real, heavy-duty tools for rock collecting so you can identify and study all the interesting rocks and minerals you find. Expand your rock collection using a rock pick, a mineral test kit and hardness scale set (with nine samples), display box for your collection, illustrated field guide, notebook, and a sturdy backpack to carry all your gear as well as the rocks you find out in the field, just like a real geologist! Grades 3-12.
Thinking Putty. This heat-sensitive, color-changing putty is amazing! It's a non-Newtonian substance that can act as a solid or a liquid. It can bounce like a rubber ball, or smash like ceramic if you hit it on cement. This is a popular gift! You can take your pick of colors: Twilight Blue, Chameleon Green, Amethyst Purple, or Sunburst Yellow .
Sensory Dome Garden. Grow more than 10 plant varieties from around the world! Experience them with all five senses as you enjoy the colored leaves of the Polka Dot Plant, touch the thick soothing leaves of Aloe, hear the rustle of Cabbage Palm, taste herbs like Basil and Rosemary, and smell Eucalyptus. If you leave the dome cover on, you'll only need to water the plants every few months. We really like all the Dunecraft kits like this.