Thursday, 4 December 2014

GeoSafari Jr. My First Microscope - Review

Like many little boys, BB is fascinated with nature. We have a stick collection by our front door, a stone collection spread across various locations, and numerous dried up leaves form a nice insulating layer in the footwells of the car. We have pine cones, conkers, nuts, feathers, rocks, lichen, dead flies... I am more than happy with this of course, natural history was my first love so I am more than pleased to get my hands dirty with him. Having a three year old is perfect for making you slow down, stop, and really look at things you would otherwise walk on by.

Of course, you can always go one step further and take a look at things under the microscope, and that is precisely what we have been doing this week. We just received a GeoSafari Jr. My First Microscope from Learning Resources and so everything from dead flies to a toy ambulance have been inspected in close up.


A dead fly under the microscope

The microscope is really robust and easy to use. The wide eye pieces mean that you don't need to readjust the width so anyone can look down it. It is also really easy to focus with just one simple knob on the side so BB is able to operate this himself. He has particularly enjoyed looking at his own fingers. Although conventional microscopes turn images upside down due to having convex lenses this one doesn't do that. I think this is good as it was always confusing for me that when you move an object up it goes down. This one really is kept simple so that even a three year old can use it successfully.
BB having a close look at his own finger - and yes,
I know he officially has the microscope backwards,
but the beauty of its simple design is that it still works,
its easier for him to see this way at this particular height,
and with the LED light his body blocking out
the light is not an issue
There is also an LED light which you can switch on to see your objects more clearly - this has been really handy on the dim dark winter days we have been having recently. As it is LED I would imagine its going to be quite efficient on the battery usage (3 x AAA) but, that said, this does rely on the user remembering to switch it off!

I was a bit disappointed in that it doesn't magnify things quite as much as I thought it might, (it goes up to X8) but actually it does enough for now. It allows you to see things clearly in more detail, without getting freaked out by a giant fly. It is also very portable; being made of plastic it is light and not too fragile, so you could easily take it out on a pond dipping trip or similar. I am sure we will find many in filed uses for this next spring and summer.

As with everything else we have had from Learning Resources, this a very well made product and I would definitely recommend it.

If you are thinking about getting some Educational Toys into the Christmas Stocking, it is worth knowing that they currently have a 3 for 2 offer on for Christmas, and offer free postage for all orders over £15


Disclaimer: This resource was sent to me free of charge for the purposes of this review. This review is however 100% my own honest thoughts and opinions and I have not been paid to write this!