You have no idea how much fun I have been having with my Discovery Scope. I received this precious item to review just a short six weeks ago, and we have been taking it with us on hikes and field trips everywhere. Rather then write a “review” I really just want to show you how we used the Discovery Scope, give you tips for making it awesome, and even share some videos we captured using Discovery Scope!
The very first day the Discovery Scope arrived, my daughter and her best friend spent the afternoon looking at various items with the scope and recording their observations in a Science notebook. They had so much fun and were quite amazed with the variety of detail they saw in mulch, dirt, flowers, sticks, leaves, bark and other found objects outside.
Can you believe that is the flower of a clover? How beautiful this weed is from a new perspective! I didn’t realize right away the versatility of this scope, in fact at first I wasn’t even sure how to get it focused. It was my eight-year old who first got the Discovery Scope to focus correctly.
When it first arrived, we were using the little plastic box that comes with the scope to view every loose item, but after talking to the vendors of Discovery Scope at a homeschool convention, I realized that inanimate objects could be clipped directly onto the clip included with my scope. We were able to get much better views with this method.
Several people have asked me if the Discovery Scope is a glorified magnifying glass. It is not. The Discovery Scope has 25X magnification and a mechanism for focusing through a tube to block out excess light. Magnifying glasses are at best 15X magnification, no focusing mechanism and cost $150. Of course, 25X magnification is not nearly what you can see with a tabletop microscope, but the Discovery Scope is not meant to be a tabletop microscope….
The Discovery Scope is a portable, lightweight and handheld wide-field microscope. It is meant for taking with you everywhere you go to explore. And for that purpose it is indispensable. We used an iPhone 4S to take pictures and video of objects seen through our Discovery Scope. This took a bit of practice, and I have the following tips for you.
- Use four hands. You will have to borrow two hands from a child or friend and have them hold the base. Do not have them hold the moveable clip.
- Once your camera lens is centered on the Discovery Scope lens, tap your finger on your camera screen to focus the camera.
- Use the clip for flowers, and the box for living beings. Flowers do not photograph well inside the box.
- Light is necessary, but too much light is overwhelming so don’t stand near a window or in a dark room.
- Practice, it will take you a few times to get the hang of it.
This is my three-year-old looking at a slice of apricot. We are having so fun much looking at all of nature from a new perspective. We have examined iron on the end of a magnet, the internals of many a flower, slices of food, and even videoed the tiny eyes of tiny living beings.
Discovery Scope Snail Video
[FMP width=”600″ height=”338″]http://encouragingmomsathome.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/SnailVideo.m4v[/FMP]
No snails were harmed in the making of this video. All snails filmed were given water and released back into their habitat near our home.
My Bottom Line: Every time MY Discovery Scope wonders off with an unsuspecting child, I start to panic. The cost of a replacement Discovery Scope is $40 and is appropriate for all ages. I would buy a replacement in a heartbeat. My children are getting used to me saying “Come look at this, and help me take a picture.” I give the Discovery Scope my highest recommendation.
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