Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Magiscope

The Magiscope is a microscope.

Why are you writing about a microscope Tracy, you have a 4 and a half year old and a 2 and a half year old.  Microscopes are for older kids.  Not this one!

A friend of mine told me about this microscope and I have been hooked ever since.  I am proud to say, we bought a used one off of EBay for the boys for Christmas.  The story of this microscope is just amazing.  If you have a moment, I encourage you to read it for yourself.  For now, I will give you a brief synopsis.

A young and very smart boy named Dennis Brock got kicked out of High School at 16.  I guess the teachers didn't like that he only came now and then to class.  I am guessing he just wasn't challenged enough because later in his life he became a microscope repair man and soon the inventor of this great microscope.  He studied and repaired microscopes for years.  One day he had the thought that he could probably build something better than what he had been fixing.  He decided that the niche in the market that was missing a good quality product was a microscope for children.  Here is a quote from the About Us page of the Magiscope website:
"What they needed was an instrument designed for kids. What was required was something they could use on their own without supervision to view whatever caught their eye. Parents, teachers and children have always been afraid of microscopes and had rarely seen a quality image. Most importantly, it had to work without cords, mirrors, batteries or any conventional light source. This would be the real prize to reach for – no light source and no breakable parts. The ultimate tool would have only one moving part and need only room light without adjustment on clear or opaque objects."

I have been writing back and forth with Jennifer, Dennis' wife.  I wrote them to get some advice on what accessories I should get to go along with the Magiscope and I just had to share with them my excitement.  She has been so helpful, teaching me the terminology and giving me some pointers for kids my age. Like making "looking scopes" out of toilet paper rolls to get them used to looking through something with one eye.  Lachlan takes pictures while looking through the eye piece of the camera, so he should be good but Peter has tried this only occasionally.  So between now and Christmas I really want to work on this with him.  I would not want him to just simply be frustrated with his new present.
I covered our toilet paper rolls with bright colored paper and then let him pick out stickers to put on the outside.  I asked him to look through it and he put it up to his eye but didn't close the other.  So I placed my hand over his other eye and then he took over.  Now I just need to incorporate play with the looking scope through out the day.

Some features you should know about.  The Magiscope is indestructible.  However, if something by chance breaks, they will fix it as part of the lifetime warranty.  Also, the scope part comes off of the stand.  Your kids can take this out in the backyard, or on a walk or on a camping trip and use it to look closely at what ever they choose! The world is their Petri dish.  Dennis was also successful with his hope of using natural light.  There is a Lumarod that brings in the natural light to the base where you would place your specimen when using the scope on the stand.  No batteries!  No plugs!
If you weren't sold already on this product then let me tell you this.  It is the only American microscope, American made.  They have had the same foundry, machinist and painter for 25 years.  This is a great example of the America we all love.  

Jennifer was kind enough to send along photos taken through the lens of one of their Magiscopes.  Taken by none other than Dennis Brock, inventor of the Magiscope.  
A Micro Mollusk on a penny.  photo by Dennis Brock
Lettuce that went to seed.  photo by Dennis Brock
Spider face. photo by Dennis Brock
I can only imagine the world will seem so much bigger to my boys as they discover and explore it in every detail, from big things to things so very, very small.  I have always wanted to establish a love of learning for my boys, I can't think of a better tool.

So maybe add one of these scopes to your Christmas list this year.  Head on over to Magiscope and check them out.

I have not gotten anything from Magiscope for saying these things.  I simply like to tell my friends about amazing products.


  1. Have you and Jeff played with it yet? Bj and I could not stop playing with it when we got it!

  2. We haven't had much opportunity with out the threat of being caught by our children. But I am so excited to when I do get a chance.