The 12 Best Microscopes For Kids In 2022 (A Complete Guide)

Primarily used by adults in laboratories, microscopes are optical instruments that allow us to view extremely small objects.

Scientists use microscopes to make groundbreaking discoveries and examine evidence.

However, microscopes aren’t just limited to adults and scientists.

There are also microscopes specifically designed for children and the fact you’ve landed here would suggest you’re looking for one.

Microscopes for kids are fun and educational tools that children are sure to enjoy as they discover the microscopic world around them and massively increase their scientific knowledge.

This knowledge increase helps children understand science, know what certain things look like, and also pass tests.

Today, we want to help you find the perfect microscope for your child. Therefore, we’ve compiled a list of the best microscopes for kids the market offers.

In this article, you’ll find our list, as well as a review of each microscope.

We’ve even put a useful buyer’s guide together that will help you make the best decision.

If you want a beginner microscope for your kids, something more professional for your teenager, or anything in between, you’re in the right place!

OUR TOP PICK

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EDITORS CHOICE

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BEST VALUE

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OUR TOP PICK

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We kick this list off with an excellent option for anyone that has a teenager with a love for science and microscopy.

For starters, the Omax digital LED compound microscope looks the part. In fact, it wouldn’t look out of place in a professional laboratory.

It features fine and coaxial coarse focus knobs and a design that has clearly been well-thought-out.

To offer full movement while scanning is taking place, this microscope has a double-layer mechanical stage.

This also makes centering much easier as there’s no need to continuously move the clips.

When it comes to magnification and the microscope camera, we were impressed with what’s on offer.

This Omax microscope has a 1.3-megapixel camera that is compatible with both Windows and Mac. 

In terms of magnification, the microscope has eight different levels, offering up to 2000x magnification.

Overall, if you’re looking for a high-quality, easy-to-use microscope that will meet the needs of your teenager for years to come, the Omax digital LED compound microscope is a fantastic option.

Pros

  • High magnification - The microscope has up to 2000x magnification.
  • Provides full movement - This microscope has a double-layer mechanical stage.
  • High-quality - This Omax microscope is made to last.

Cons

  • Pricey - This option isn’t budget-friendly.

Also available at: Omaxmicroscope.com

EDITORS CHOICE

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As far as budget-friendly microscopes for beginners go, Nancy B’s science club microscope from Educational Insights takes some beating.

If you have a child 8 years or older and want to introduce them to the world of microscopy, this could be your best option.

This basic, yet effective microscope, gives beginners the chance to observe various specimens easily.

Offering basic zoom capabilities in a two-in-one dissecting and light microscope, children can view 30x, 100x, and decent 400x resolutions.

Opening your child’s eyes to the world of science, this Educational Insights microscope comes with specimen containers and tweezers.

This makes it much easier for your child to view small insects and examine cells.

One feature we absolutely love about this microscope is the journal that comes with it.

The journal lets children keep track of their findings and also try out a variety of experiments. 

The journal actually comes with 22 pages of activities and experiments to have a go at, introducing your child to proper science.

Pros

  • Budget-friendly - Introduce your child to science without breaking the bank.
  • Feature-packed - The science club microscope comes with an activity journal and scientific instruments. 
  • Easy-to-use - Your child will easily develop basic microscopy skills.

Cons

  • Blurry magnifications - Higher magnifications might experience blur.

Also available at: Educationalinsights.com

BEST VALUE

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The next microscope on our list of microscopes for kids is the Carson MicroBrite plus microscope.

This microscope is perfect for your child if you need a budget-friendly, portable microscope.

Despite being very small in size, this Carson microscope packs a punch.

Perfect for exploring outside and on the go, the powerful 60x to 120x magnification range should be more than enough for beginners.

However, children with more experience using a microscope may find the focal length a little short.

Powered by 1 AA battery, this lightweight, extremely compact microscope also comes with LED illumination and an aspheric lens system.

The light rays pass through this lens system at one focal point, helping to make images appear much clearer and free of any distortion.

It is worth noting that to guarantee the longevity of this microscope, the battery should be removed before storing it away.

When we took a close look at the Carson MicroBrite microscope, we were pleased with the overall performance and style the microscope offered.

It looks great and performs even better. What more could we ask for?

Pros

  • Portable - This microscope is lightweight and compact.
  • LED illumination - See specimens clearly.
  • Affordable - You’ll struggle to find a more affordable microscope.

Cons

Also available at: Carson.com

RUNNER UP

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Parents wanting to instill the principles of science in their children from an early age will love this toy microscope from Kidzlane.

Absolutely perfect for toddlers, the Kidzlane microscope science toy is an epic toy microscope that gives young children the opportunity to get up close and personal with a range of different toy animals.

These toy animals include a spider and a lizard.

Also included with the microscope is a small petri dish, other specimens, and tweezers. 

Essentially, this set gives toddlers a microscopy experience through play.

Featuring a cool monkey design and 8x magnification, your toddler will be totally immersed in the experience without being overwhelmed.

Their hand-eye coordination and motor skills will also develop.

We appreciated how the microscope also comes with an easy-to-operate focus wheel and large viewing eyecups to make things much easier for little ones.

The microscope's solid plastic frame is also a neat touch as it prevents toddlers from easily damaging the instrument.

Pros

  • Fun - Toddlers are provided with a fun way into the world of science.
  • Easy-to-use - Your toddler won’t have any trouble using this microscope.
  • Soft eyecups - You don’t need to worry about your toddler hurting themselves.

Cons

  • Quickly outgrown - Your child might outgrow the Kidzlane microscope quite quickly.

Also available at: Kidzlane.com

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A popular microscope with many science students is this National Geographic dual-LED student microscope.

Sure to bring out the scientist in any child, this is a great option for your child if they want to learn more about microscopy and develop professional skills.

With over 50 accessories included, the National Geographic microscope comes with two microscopes in one.

Children can use the lower LED lights to observe biological specimens and the upper lights to examine intricate objects in more detail.

In terms of accessories, the microscope comes with 10 prepared slides that contain a variety of different specimens, blank slides, covers, an eye-dropper, Petri dishes, a mini geode, and tweezers.

We were impressed with how powerful this affordable instrument is. The microscope is equipped with two optical lenses that provide 20x to 50x magnification.

Both are easily operated and fun to use, making the learning experience much more enjoyable.

As if all of that wasn’t enough, this high-quality kit also comes with a brine shrimp experiment. This lets students track the life cycle of the brine shrimp.

Pros

  • Brine shrimp experiment - This gives your child a more professional experience.
  • 50+ accessories - National Geographic’s microscope is packed with accessories.
  • Suitable for students - Children from the age of 7 can use this microscope.

Cons

  • Low magnification - 50x is the highest magnification on offer.

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Next on our list, we have the GeoSafari Jr. talking microscope. This is another great option given to us by Educational Insights.

Perfect for preschoolers that haven’t used a microscope before, this microscope's biggest selling point is its awesome audio.

Voiced by wildlife lover Bindi Irwin, the audio expands knowledge in regards to the world of plants and animals.

Another excellent selling point is the high-quality images included. These images also help improve and develop scientific knowledge.

Offering 5x magnification and dual eyecups that are focus-free, any child from the age of 4 can use the microscope.

When we reviewed this microscope, we were surprised at just how good the images were.

The images can be slid into the microscope just like a real specimen. In our opinion, this microscope is also one of the best educational tools out there.

This is because the set also comes with academic resources, 100 facts, and an interesting quiz.

Pros

  • Great educational tool - The GeoSafari microscope comes with an abundance of educational resources, including quizzes, voice notes, and facts.
  • Multilingual - The microscope is available in four languages.
  • Two modes included - Effortlessly switch between fact and quiz mode.

Cons

  • More like a viewer - This microscope operates similarly to a viewer.

Also available at: Target.com

RUNNER UP

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The Omano JuniorScope microscope has a number of fantastic features that make it a great option for a wide range of children.

Whether your child is looking for their first microscope or already knows how to use one and wants a microscope that will develop their knowledge further, this option is up there with the very best.

Pricier than other microscopes on the market, but still fairly priced, one of the best things about the microscope is its dual functionality.

With a magnification range of 40 to 400x, the microscope can be used for low and high-powered uses, giving kids the opportunity to view transparent and opaque objects and specimens.

Featuring a more traditional design, Omano’s sturdy microscope comes with informational sheets, specimens, batteries, Petri dishes, tweezers, and much more.

Within these accessories, your child will find 8 experiments.

Suitable for children from the age of 6 and up, everything about this microscope impressed us.

The solid metal and crystal design make it super durable, the experiments help develop scientific knowledge, and the usability of the microscope makes it much easier for younger children to use.

Pros

Cons

  • Expensive - This microscope is quite pricey.

Also available at: Microscope.com

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With a powerful magnification of 0x to 1000x the digital USB mini microscope from Eleay is easily one of the more reliable, high-quality USB microscopes for children.

Offering your children the opportunity to explore the microworld without having to learn too much or fiddle around with any technical issues, this USB microscope is packed with useful features.

One of the best of these features is the microscope's eight LED lights. These lights provide adjustable illumination, making it much easier to view specimens clearly.

Another great feature, and one we can appreciate massively, is the microscopes compatibility.

This microscope has a type-C USB. This is important as it makes it compatible with most devices.

This includes laptops, PCs, and smartphones. You can then use the microscope with Windows and Mac.

In terms of camera performance and durability, this microscope performs brilliantly.

The metal frame is solid, as are the plastic parts of the microscope. The camera is 30 megapixels, so a clear, focused image is guaranteed.

Pros

  • Intelligent focusing - Eleay’s USB microscope has an intelligent focus function to ensure clear viewing.
  • Tripod included - The tripod needed to hold the microscope in place comes with your purchase.
  • Versatile - This microscope works with most devices and operating systems.

Cons

  • No case included - Unfortunately, this microscope doesn’t come with a storage case.

RUNNER UP

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If you’re keen on the idea of a digital microscope, but you want an alternative to the Eleay digital USB microscope, be sure to take a close look at the USB digital microscope from Plugable.

Loved by many, the Plugable USB digital microscope is considered one of the best digital microscopes ever made, and for good reason.

Aside from being affordable, compact, lightweight, and easy to store, this digital microscope is extremely efficient.

Ideal for at-home use, or use in the classroom, this microscope can be held by hand and pointed at specimens, placed directly on the subject, or locked in place thanks to a super flexible arm.

The flexible arm allows precise, free movement, making it incredibly easy to focus on a specific area.

Built with a solid plastic frame that’s designed to last, this microscope comes with a 4-foot cable that can be plugged into devices or a power socket.

When it comes to performance, the microscope has a magnification range of 0x to 250x, LED adjustable lights, an easy-to-use controller, and a CMOS sensor.

Pros

  • Awesome design - The Plugable USB microscope couldn’t be any easier to use.
  • Long cable - A 4-foot power cable is included.
  • Compatible with various devices - This microscope works with almost any device and operating system.

Cons

  • Low resolution - The maximum resolution on this microscope isn’t very high.

Also available at: Insight.com

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Parents looking to buy their child their first microscope kit should check out the 52 pc kids beginner microscope kit from AmScope.

Equipped with 52 different accessories that make microscopy much easier, this set comes with everything your child will need to start their science journey.

Coming in a durable carry case, accessories include glass slides, tweezers, a shrimp hatchery, and specimens.

In terms of the microscope your child will receive, this carry case comes with a simple, yet effective traditional compound microscope.

Offering high levels of performance, the magnification range on the microscope is 120x to 1,200x. This is perfect and should easily be enough to cater to all your child's needs.

The microscope also features a two-in-one mirror and LED light source, a monocular viewing head, focus mechanisms, a stain-resistant frame, and a color filter wheel.

Despite its high-quality and reliable performance, it was the carry case we appreciated most with this microscope.

The case makes it incredibly easy for your child to take their microscope on the go with them.

Pros

  • Great magnification - This microscope has a magnification range of 120x to 1,200x.
  • Accessories included - This kit comes with 52 accessories.
  • Brine shrimp included - AmScope’s kid's microscope comes with a shrimp brine experiment included.

Cons

  • Awkward lighting - The lighting is positioned quite awkwardly.

Also available at: Amscope.com

RUNNER UP

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If you want to introduce your child to the wonderful world of microscopy, the next microscope might be ideal.

The perfect tool for any budding scientist wanting to get started, the My First Lab microscope is suited to anyone age 9 and up.

A type of two-in-one compound and stereo microscope, this duo-scope has dual lenses. This allows your child to view large items and slides.

Each duo-scope comes equipped with a 10x eyepiece and 4x, 10x, and 40x glass objectives. These help to provide 40x, 100x, and 400x magnification.

Aside from this solid magnification, My First Lab’s microscope comes with a durable metallic frame that features clips and a stage. The microscope also has dual LED illumination.

Included with your purchase of the My First Lab microscope, you’ll receive 50 accessories.

These accessories include prepared slides, Petri dishes, test tubes, and a useful instruction manual.

Pros

  • Dual scope - Your child can view slides and larger items.
  • Accessories included - This microscope comes with 50 accessories.
  • Award-winning - It also helps to know a product has won awards.

Cons

  • Assistance required - Your child may require assistance when using this microscope.

Also available: Myfirstlab.com

RUNNER UP

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The final kid's microscope on our list is another fabulous choice if you’re looking for a microscope for your toddler or young child.

While it may look like a toy and is designed with fun in mind, the Thames & Kosmos microscope is the perfect tool to introduce your little one to the world of science.

Vibrant and lightweight in design, this microscope comes with a selection of slides that feature images of various things. This includes plants, cells, and animals.

Using the extra wide monocular eyepiece, toddlers and young children can then look through the scope to take a much closer look at each specimen.

The kit even comes with some blank slides for when they are ready to start collecting their own specimens.

While the 8x magnification might not be the best we’ve ever seen, for what the microscope is designed for it works perfectly.

Other useful features this microscope comes with include LED lights, adjustable mechanisms, a color manual, and 72 slides.

Pros

  • Great educational tool - Your child’s knowledge will quickly grow.
  • Fun - Using this microscope is enjoyable.
  • Specimens included - This kit comes with 72 slides.

Cons

  • Low magnification - This microscope only has 8x magnification.

Also available at: Store.thamesandkosmos.com

Buyer's Guide

Before rushing into a decision and buying a microscope that doesn’t meet the needs and requirements of your child, there are a number of important factors to take into consideration.

To help, we’ve put together this buyer’s guide.

The 12 Best Microscopes For Kids In 2022 (A Complete Guide)

In it, you’ll find the factors you have to think about in order to buy the best microscope for your child.

The Type Of Microscope

One of the most important things you need to think about is the type of microscope your child needs. The last thing you want to do is buy the wrong one.

There are two types of microscopes to choose from. These are compound microscopes and stereo microscopes.

Compound microscopes can either be monocular, binocular, or trinocular and usually have a magnification of 1000x. They are typically used for smaller specimens.

On the other hand, stereo microscopes are binocular and offer 3D images of each specimen.

They also have dual magnification powers. For example 20x and 40x. This type of microscope is used for larger items.

Magnification

A microscope is an optical tool used to magnify specific items and specimens.

Therefore, you have to ensure the microscope you buy has enough magnification power to let your child view tiny specimens clearly.

Generally speaking, for a child's microscope, a microscope with a magnification range that falls between 20x and 1,200x is great as they won’t be using the microscope like a professional.

Fine Focus

When it comes to finding the best microscope for your kid, you should do all you can to find one that has fine focus.

Fine focus is important because it offers more flexibility in regard to changing the depth of vision.

Accessories

One of the best things about child microscope kits is that they usually come with everything your child needs to get started.

This is perfect because it removes the need for buying multiple things at once and makes the kit a lot easier for your child to use.

With this in mind, always think about what accessories your child needs.

In our opinion, kits that come with Petri dishes, test tubes, slides, images, a guidebook, and shrimp brine experiments are the best options.

Illumination

Illumination is another factor you need to think about carefully.

How the microscope provides illumination is vital. If the illumination isn’t reliable enough, viewing each specimen will be tough.

Mirrors are a strong choice as they provide ample lighting with little maintenance.

Lightbulbs are also excellent. It might also be worth looking for a microscope that can be illuminated above and below. This will only enhance the overall clarity of each specimen.

Price

It is important to note that just because a microscope costs more than others doesn’t necessarily mean it is the one you need.

There are plenty of excellent microscopes on the market that don’t cost too much.

Your child will still be able to learn and develop skills.

Having said that, if you’re seeking a professional microscope for your teenager, you might decide it’s better to pay for a more expensive kit.

We recommend carefully thinking about what it is you need and how much you have to spend before looking for a microscope.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Type Of Microscope Is Best For Kids?

Both compound and stereo microscopes can be used effectively and easily by children.

However, from our experience, we would say a stereo microscope is the better of the two.

The reason we say this is because you can put almost anything underneath it, giving your child more freedom to experiment and learn.

Can DNA Be Seen Under A Microscope?

Most people assume it’s impossible to see DNA under a microscope.

 However, if you have a powerful microscope and thousands of DNA cells, you should be able to see it. This can only be done with the best of the best microscopes though.

Can My 5-Year-Old Use A Microscope?

Yes, absolutely, your 5-year-old can use a microscope. However, they may need some guidance and demonstrations so they know how to.

It is also a good idea to buy a specific kids' microscope that they can play with and learn from in their own time.

Final Thoughts

Purchasing a suitable, high-quality microscope for your child is a great way to introduce them to the world of microscopy and science without totally blowing their minds.

Child-friendly microscopes are designed to educate children on how to use a microscope, what they are for, and the amazing things that can be observed by using one.

They almost always come with everything your child needs to get started.

In this article, we’ve shown you 12 microscopes that do it perfectly.

While the options on our list vary in terms of how they work, what they offer, and what accessories come included, they all share one thing in common. 

That thing is the desire to make science accessible to children and to create a long-lasting love of microscopy.

Now you have our list and buyer’s guide at your disposal, why don’t you start to narrow down the options we have reviewed and start to identify the microscopes that suit your child best.

Jennifer Dawkins

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