Little Passports is a subscription box that helps kids explore the world through fun and educational activities and is one of the best subscription boxes for kids as voted by MSA readers. They offer a range of subscription options for ages 3-8+, as well as "Individual Activity Kits" that can be ordered along with any subscription at the time of purchase.
This review is of the Little Passports: Science Expeditions (recommended ages 8+) for $27.95. This box includes science experiments, plus a comic book related to the monthly theme.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we review boxes.)
Science Expedition: "Color Lab"
One of the biggest perks of working in education is having summers off. I like to playfully banter with my husband that this really isn't true as "I work from son up to son down," but I don't actually have to set an alarm or drive to the school for 12ish weeks. Because I am home with my boys, I like to incorporate learning through play, and Little Passports: Science Expeditions is the perfect way to do that. Complete with a comic book, supplies, and educational background, this monthly box is packed with information not only for kids, but adults too! Because I am also a craft enthusiast, I think I was more excited for this month's "Color Lab" theme than the boys were. Read below to see how our tie-dyeing adventure went!
Color Lab Comic and Activity Book
Every month, Little Passports sends our monthly activity along with a really fun comic and activity book pertaining to the monthly theme. For our "Color Lab" theme, we read an exciting comic, and discovered a bonus "Nature's Colorful Dyes" activity. This booklet is not only informative, but really teaches students the specific content using colorful and engaging story lines. Always fun!
This month's comic was really cool and described exactly what we needed to know for the projects. We learned some interesting color facts, rods and cones, electromagnetic radiation, and pigments. And as always, all information is presented in an easy to understand, and fun way.
Color Lab Instruction Guide
After our wonderful introduction to the world of color through the comic book, we couldn't wait to see what kind of experiments we would be performing. Included in the instruction guide for this month are tips, tricks, techniques, and video links for our tie-dyeing tote project. To note, most projects will require some items from home. This month we needed to provide ice, water, a large container, scissors, a plastic tablecloth, and a drying rack. Because some months require more specific supplies, I suggest reading through the instructions before you start so you aren't left stuck in the middle of a project.
Project 1: "Tie-Dye Tote"
Because the art of tie-dyeing is quite labor intensive, this is the only project we received in our "Color Lab" kit. After learning about the science behind how our eyes actually see color, we were given the task to die-dye a tote using the ice-dyeing method. Included in this month's kit was yellow, red, and blue tie-dye, gloves, a wax crayon, rubber bands, and a canvas tote bag.
To start this month's project, we went ahead and read all of the instructions. Because we worked outside, we didn't place anything on our work surface because we weren't worried about dye spills or splatters. In the booklet were 3 different techniques, and how to create each one. The boys decided on the spiral technique, so we went ahead and tried it out. Using the wax crayon, the boys drew designs on each side of the tote bag. Once complete, we headed to the warm water to submerge our tote bag. Folding it per the "spiral" instructions, we added the rubber bands and set it on our rack which was placed over our empty container.
Using the ice-dyeing technique, we placed about 1 1/2 cups of ice on top of the tote bag and started adding the powdered dye. Because we accidentally put dye on 2 of the triangle sections, we ended up adding each color only once, but were still excited to see the results. Once the ice completely melted, we flipped the bag over on the other side and added more ice and dye.
After the ice on the other side melted, we let the bag dry for 24 hours, so the dye could set. Once the bag dried, we cut off the rubber bands and discovered our tie dye pattern. Using gloves, we rinsed the bag under water until it ran clear and washed it in the washing machine. I haven't had experience with tie dye in powder form but was a little disappointed the colors didn't stay as vibrant as when they first appeared, and the kids' wax drawings didn't really show up either. While it wasn't quite as bright as we would have liked, it was still a fun project, and now Hank has a new bag to tote his library books around in.
Color Lab Badge
After we completed our activities, we were awarded the Color Lab Badge, as a tribute to our hard work and play!
We have been reviewing Little Passports kits some time now and tend to enjoy all of them. While we usually find the kits with more experiments more engaging, we always love tie dye, and trying the ice-melt technique was pretty cool. Between the supplies and educational aspect, we really enjoyed this month's theme, but would have liked to have seen more items to tie-dye or another project included. All in all, we had a great time reading learning about colors, and getting to spend some time crafting in the sun, though I hope next month's box includes a few more projects. What did you think about this box? How did your tie-dye turn out?
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To Wrap Up
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? You'll start with the Forensic Science box in the first month, followed by a different themed box each month thereafter.
What do you think of this month's box?