10 Holiday Gifts for Budding Scientists


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Weather Match-Ups

These cards let kids learn facts about the weather in a very fun way. Lakeshore Learning Materials
These cards let kids learn facts about the weather in a very fun way. Lakeshore Learning Materials

Weather is science that happens every day, so what better way to keep a budding scientist busy? With Weather Match-Ups, the researcher on your gift list can keep one eye to the weather and another to learning more about the systems that cause it. Designed for children ages 7 and 8, Weather Match-Ups will dovetail nicely with at least one earth science unit that's sure to appear in second- or third-grade classroom curricula.

More to the point, it's a fun way to start learning a few fun weather facts ahead of schedule. The set includes 12 three-piece puzzles that focus on earth science facts. Simply connect a picture to its matching word and definition, and voila -- the match-up becomes a flashcard that illustrates the basics of wind and hail, stratus and cumulus clouds, tornadoes, lightning and more. Before long, you could just have a meteorologist on your hands.

Author's Note: 10 Holiday Gifts for Budding Scientists

When I was in the second grade, I found my older brother's science kit in the game cabinet. I still remember setting up the test tubes and mixing potions and concoctions in my room for most of the winter, the winds howling outside as I played mad scientist. Well, not really "mad." I was neither crazy nor angry, just incredibly curious and, frankly, quite happy with my scientific discoveries, whatever they were. This early foray into chemistry led to rock collections, summer science camps and homemade rocket launches. Although I never made a career out of it, science is still a long-held interest. But now I explore it with my 10- and 4-year-old daughters, who are currently plotting ways to record the voyage of their Beanie Boos into near space. They've been collecting materials and diagramming their plan for weeks. All that stands between them and their budding "Beanstronaut" is a weather balloon. Guess I know what's on their holiday gift list.

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Sources

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  • Science Castle. "Solar Power PLUS." (Oct. 25, 2012) http://sciencecastle.com/sc/index.php/sciencekits/view/Solar+Power+PLUS
  • Sterner, Robert. "The Conservation of Mass." Nature Education. 2012. (Oct. 25, 2012) http://www.nature.com/scitable/knowledge/library/the-conservation-of-mass-17395478
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