Best chemistry sets for children
£28.98, Learning Resources
'Real' science tools sized perfectly for little hands and just the thing for younger siblings to play with when big brothers and sisters are getting hands-on with their own chemistry sets. Includes a (plastic) beaker, magnifying glass, funnel, pipette, flask, tweezers, goggles, different-sized test tubes with lids and stands and suggested activity cards. Suitable from age 3.
£10.20, 4M Kidz Labs
Six simple science activities to try in the kitchen, from a lemon-powered watch to a mini volcano eruption. Some common household items are required as extra 'ingredients', so make sure you have them in stock before your scientist starts experimenting.
A brilliantly-priced first chemistry set. The equipment for 150 safety-tested experiments is in the box, including a flask, test tubes and protective goggles; what to do is explained in a full-colour instruction sheet with photos and diagrams. You will need household and kitchen items to complete some of the activities, so check the list before your mini-scientist gets to work!
£30, Thames & Kosmos
Explore chemiluminescence (the chemical reactions that produce light) with this chemistry set with a (very bright) difference. You'll make coins and radishes glow, discover the lumimous natural world, use an ultraviolet light, learn about the electromagnetic spectrum and build a glow-in-the-dark puppet theatre. Step-by-step instructions for 22 light chemistry experiments are included.
£29.90 for the monthly subscription sets
A chemistry set for the twenty-first century, MEL Chemistry uses videos as well as text to help children understand what is actually happening inside each experiment and reaction; the accompanying app shows the molecules and crystal structures used in the experiments in 3D and in virtual reality. Most innovative is the delivery: you purchase a subscription to receive a starter set and then 38 experiment sets through the post, ensuring a regular supply of new materials to keep young chemists engaged. Best for ages 11+.
£32.38, John Adams
A comprehensive basic chemistry set with 100 experiments to try to support National Curriculum learning about gases, metals, acids, alkali, salts, electrolytes, indicators, precipitates and crystals. A 24-page detailed instruction booklet is included, but it's worth stocking up on the extras you'll need to conduct the experiments (methylated spirit, vinegar, cotton balls).