Is there anything better than getting a gift that your child loves so much they wake up at 7am to use it?
Well, the 7am part I could do without…but that’s exactly what happened when my son received the Usborne book 50 Things to Make and Do as a Christmas gift.
I’ve written before about my son, who recently turned 10, and how is the very definition of a hands-on learner. He is why this blog exists. He’s the kid who isn’t happy unless his hands are busy creating something. 50 Science Things to Make & Do is PERFECT for him!
Reasons I love this book:
-It’s written in kid-friendly language
-Most of the experiments can be done by the child with parental supervision
-It’s the perfect size for kid hands (it’s small)
-It’s spiral bound so the pages stay open for easy referral during an experiment
-The pages are water-resistant for when things get messy
-Everything needed is probably already in your house or available at the dollar store
-There is a nice balance of experiments that provide immediate results and those that take a few days or hours
-Every experiment includes a “how it works” section
So, basically, if you have a child who is always looking for a project and loves science, buy this book!
Just to convince you of how cool this book is, here is one of the experiments! My son was able to complete the entire experiment alone but you probably want to supervise the cutting carefully.
Extracting Onion DNA (this also works well with strawberries and pureed fresh spinach!)
~2 tbsp dish soap (the hand-washing kind)
2 tbsp water
1/2 tsp salt
~ 1/2 cup rubbing alcohol
a colander or sieve
a large bowl
a glass jar
Step 1: finely chop the onion and place in a bowl
Step 2: add dish detergent to onion and gently toss to coat onion, let sit for 10 minutes
Step 3: add salt and water, slowly mix so you don’t create bubbles
Step 4: place the colander over a bowl and drain the onion/soap mixture for about 15minutes
Step 5: pour the liquid from the bowl into a glass jar
Step 6: slowly pour the rubbing alcohol into the jar, pouring it along the side of the jar so it doesn’t make bubbles
Step 7: allow the jar to sit for about 20 minutes. You’ll see white strands start to appear, that’s the DNA!
Ages: 7 & up (my recommendation)
**This post was not solicited. This was a book I purchased for use in our homeschooling and loved so much I decided to review it.**
Meg Grooms (she/her) is a decades-long secular homeschooler, mother of many, writer, Florida ex-pat, and all-around swell gal. Meg & her partner have raised their kids all over the USA, finally settling on Southern California. For now, anyhow.
Meg blogs about secular homeschooling and gameschooling at Homeschool Gameschool. Meg is available for speaking engagements, workshops, and gameschooling classes, please see the About Us/Contact Meg page for more information.