Magic School Bus Science Club Subscription Review – April 2015
Magic School Bus Science Club is a subscription box for kids based on the books and television show “The Magic School Bus” and teaches children about science topics through hands-on activities. The subscription is part of The Young Scientists Club and was developed by a team of Harvard graduates, scientists, and educators!
My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).
The Subscription Box: Magic School Bus Science Club
The Cost: Regular monthly subscription is $19.99
Ships To: US only (free)
The Products: Every month, Magic School Bus Science Club sends an activity booklet with seven “experiments” and most of the materials to complete them. Each month is built around a science topic.
This month’s topic is VOLCANOES! What more do I have to say?
Just as a note, if you are hesitating on this subscription because of some shortcomings you might have in science yourself, there is an answer key in the back of the booklet with some notes for parents. They also have a fairly robust set of online resources for you to read up on.
For the purposes of this review, I will only highlight a few of the experiments – enough that you get a good idea of what this subscription is all about. Magic School Bus Science Club is appropriate for ages 5-12 (per their website), and I go through these activities with my nine-year-old son.
Here is a look inside the booklet at some of the experiments and their format. Much of the important information is included in comic book dialog format, which I think is perfect for kids this age (especially boys). As I’ve mentioned, I do wish they would stick to the scientific method, though!
These are all the raw materials that were sent to us this month. One thing that I have to say about Magic School Bus is that they do NOT send you everything you need. This month I was particularly disappointed in the lack of supplies they sent. If it costs me a trip to the grocery store, that’s usually what pushes me into the frown-zone.
This month was a little different than most in that three of the “experiments” were part of one larger experiment, making a volcano. Also, there were two experiments that were just matching games to familiarize my son with some earth science terms. That’s totally fine, I am mentioning it only because there weren’t many things to photograph for this review.
One of the things we learned as we worked through the booklet was all the different types of volcanic products, such as magma, lava, and different types of rock. Do you know what pumice is? I didn’t! Pumice forms when lava and minerals are frothing out of the volcano and then hardens in its frothy state. Therefore, it is one of very few types of rock that float in water! Cool, right?
Here’s our volcano! The main event! (Sorry for the picture of the nasty rusted pan I used to contain the mess.) This is about 15 seconds after the eruption began, and it continued for another 30 seconds or so. Very exciting! We used a bottle and some construction paper for the structure of the volcano. Then we added a mixture (of our own trial-and-error design) of water, baking soda, and dish detergent to the bottle. Finally, when we were ready for the eruption, my son poured in vinegar. Away it blew! The kids loved it! I wish we had used some red food coloring, though – I think that would have looked awesome!
Verdict: One thing I love about Magic School Bus is that there’s always at least one experiment that makes everyone go, “WHOA!” This month it was definitely the volcano. Aside from having to pull together a few too many items from home (or the grocery store), and my usual wish that they would actually use the scientific method, there’s really nothing bad I can say about Magic School Bus. It’s a big hit!
What do you think of Magic School Bus Science Club?