PROS / The equipment is all reusable.
CONS / You do not get very many items with this kit.
VERDICT / This kit is a good introductory step into the world of chemistry for kids.
The CHEM C500 is the fourth in a series of chemistry sets produced by Thames & Kosmos. Each CHEM chemistry kit builds upon the teachings of the previous one, and as a student moves along, the information and experiments become progressively sophisticated. The CHEM C500 introduces children to the concept that there are scientific principles involved in all aspects of everyday life. It emphasizes laboratory procedures, offers 28 chemistry experiments for kids and is fun enough to keep your child interested.
Among other things, your child can learn about acids and bases, use metals and salts in experiments involving a small battery, and even pick up some nifty magic tricks. He or she can write messages in invisible ink and make liquids fizz with sodium carbonate. This chemistry set for kids includes a colorful 50-page manual that provides clear instructions, as well as information about why and how an experiment turns out the way it does.
The supply tray for the C500 is a bit meager, containing only a few items. However, the equipment in this kit is reusable, unlike some of the specialized items in other beginner chemistry sets. Besides chemicals, the C500 contains only basic measuring and mixing equipment, a pair of safety glasses and a 9V battery connector. The C500 contains six different chemicals, each of which is used in multiple experiments. This science kit contains all the chemicals you need to complete the experiments, but you need to provide your own 9V battery for the experiments on electricity and electromagnetism.
The CHEM C500's manual outlines procedures and explanations for all of the experiments. While the experiments are simple enough for kids 8 and over to conduct independently, you should make sure your child reads the manual carefully before and during any experiments. Doing the experiments and watching the results provides entertainment and some education, but the explanations in the manual are key to getting the most out of this chemistry set for kids.
While the CHEM C500 does not offer the extensive line of experiments contained in more advanced chemistry sets, it is a good choice for a youngster who likes science but has never done science experiments at home before. Your youngster can enjoy and learn from the experiments, and you can observe his or her level of interest to see whether it would be worth it to progress to more complicated home chemistry sets.