At some point we begin to ask “Why?”
And when the answer isn’t readily available in the brain of some adult, kids need another hands-on way to find out.
Science toys to the rescue! So many things are available now as kits and simple lessons that we are sure to find the right one for the question at hand.
The Live Butterfly Garden by Insect Lore is one of the most popular science toys today. The kit includes butterfly habitat and you mail away for three butterfly larvae. This is so cool because you can actually watch the butterflies’ metamorphosis close up! The kit retails for less that $20.
Rainy Days Great for Science
On a recent rainy day I did an online search (since we didn’t want to go out in the rain to begin with) and found a page of free science experiments that can be created from items already in the house.
We decided that making ice cream would be a good one (you can’t snack on a radio when it’s finished), and it was so easy! When we finished I got the “why did that work, mom?” question, and I was actually able to answer it from the information provided on the site.
For those not wanting to tackle homemade projects the kits are great because the items needed are already included and it can be tucked away on a top shelf to be pulled out for your own rainy day. Some science toys have instant gratification and others, like the Live Butterfly Garden, will take some time to grow into the full experiment. The hands-on time is great for growing brains!
Choosing the Right Science Toys
I have found kits that go as young as 4 years in the science sections at some stores, but most will be for at least age 8. Be sure to check the age range when purchasing a kit since nothing is more frustrating than trying to do something beyond your ability (or comprehension, as is the case for some of these). More and more of the kits are offered at around the $20 range making it a reasonable option for an afternoon activity.
Another side effect from these kits and experiments is that adults and children might actually learn to enjoy science in a way they never have before. Making ice cream at home might start one on the path to culinary wizardry, so be prepared for the unknown.