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Archive for the ‘Gift Items’ Category

Quick Gifts: 10 Toys That cost less than $10 and ship easy!

OK, here’s 10 quick gifts that cost less than $10, can ship easy (weigh less than a pound) and are great as stocking stuffers or gifts for people on a budget. Let’s go!

Fun Straws


Comes with 104 pieces that allow you to construct a maze of straws that makes drinking your favorite beverage a whole new world.


Dino Pet – a living bioluminescent pet

We finally have them in stock, the Dino Pet! The glowing, living dino-shaped pet!



Galileo Thermometers – How they work and how to read them.

As far as temperature measurements go, the most beautiful way to measure it is with a Galileo Thermometer. The attractive glass tubes with floating balls that change over time and temperature ever so slowly and gracefully.



Gift Ideas for older kids (sometimes known as ‘adults’)

Sometimes you just want to get a friend, spouse, sibling, parent or somebody who isn’t a child a neat present from your science store.  Well here are a few suggestions for items that adults can enjoy.

Rare Earth Magnet Building Toy



MOVA Solar Powered Spinning Globes

We’ve been waiting for these to come in, and now they are here. We are talking about the MOVA Solar Powered Spinning Globes!


These globes sit on their base and with just a little bit of light will spin. If you pick up the globe it will still spin! Put it on the table and it continues to spin! There is no cord, no batteries, and really odd is no obvious solar cells.

The secret is that the the globe is actually immersed in a liquid that in turn is inside a clear acrylic globe. There are solar panels located behind the printed image of the globe. Since the globe only needs a little bit of light to runt he drive mechanism this works out fine. Let;s take a look at a video of the globe in action:

The MOVA globes are a great desktop toy. and don’t just come as a globe. We also have ones that are the surface of the Moon


And also one that is the Planet Jupiter



There are more of these MOVA globes available and we will be adding more very soon. Keep an eye out on this blog for more Solar Spinning Globes.

Want to buy a solar spinning Earth? Moon? Jupiter?


Stocking Stuffer Ideas

We like to suggest a few ideas for great ‘stocking stuffer’ toys for the holiday season. We keep it to items that a) are under $5 and b) will actually fit in a stocking. Here’s just a few ideas for you:

LadyBug Windup


Great fun – wind it up and watch it zoom around like crazy, flip itself over and spin itself dizzy. We have other Wind-ups as well, such as the Sidewinder Snake, the Sideways Walking Crab and more!
4 pc Finger Lights



4 LED flashlights, each a different color (red, blue, green, white) that wrap around your fingers. Great fun for dance parties or for kids!

Spy Glasses


Wear these Spy Glasses to see if anyone is following you! Special mirrored sides of the lenses allow you a rear-view mirror view!

Deluxe Mini Pocket Kite


A kite you can take anywhere! Folds up into it own little round box (included). Simply unfold it and fly it!

Glow Art


Make picture with light! This little portable light peg toy lets you make pretty images with the pegs. It even has a way to store the pegs when not in use!

Spider Balls


Drop a Spider Ball into water and be amazed as a multitude of multicolored balls will burst forth from the green sac and grow up to 100 times its size within hours! They can be tossed, squished, and rolled!






Gift Suggestions Made Because we have Videos of them!

Sometimes it is just easier to show folks what a product does than to try and explain it in the product copy.  This is one of those times.  Here are some awesome videos of great gift ideas:

Let’s start with the Revolving Cosmos Spinner

The Cosmic Sounding Zube Tube

The awesome Laser Pegs construction sets:

The winsome and incredibly realistic Butterfly in a Jar

The hypnotic Sandscapes.

The Colorful and playful Crystal Lamp.



Early Stocking Stuffer Suggestions

So its getting to be that time of year, so how about some suggestions to make life easier? We’ll start off slow with some simple ‘stocking stuffer’ suggestions.  For this we have 2 criteria to qualify as a ‘stocking stuffer’:

1) Be under $15

2) Fit in a (knit) stocking

So let’s get some gift ideas out there!

Let’s start with a popular item, the Top Secret Perpetual Spinning Top! Give the top a spin and it will go for days before even thinking about tipping over.

Perpetual Spinning Top

Perpetual Spinning Top

Next up we have the Mini-Newton’s Cradle. It works just like its big brother (with conservation of momentum that is) but can fit in the palm of your hand!

Mini Newton's Cradle

Mini Newton's Cradle

The HexBug Crab reaches the limit in both price, and might stretch a stocking in its packaging, but it qualifies! This little guy comes to sound and flees from light!

HexBug Crab

Hexbug Crab

The Ghost Writer Invisble Ink Pen is quite affordable and includes the UV light for seeing what you wrote!

Ghost Writer Invisible Ink Pen

Ghost Writer Invisible Ink Pen

Squidy is a perennial science favorite as it demonstrates pressure. Your own little cartesian diver!

Squidy Cartesian Diver

Squidy Cartesian Diver

Give the gift of…vomit? Sure, when it is a cool dissectible Owl Pellet!

Owl Pellet

Owl Pellet

Make dinner fun for little engineers with the Fork Lift Fork! Check out the Bulldozer Pusher and the Front Loader Spoon!

Fork Lift Fork

Fork Lift Fork

Launch the Firefly into the air with the rubber band and it spins down to earth in a dazzle of colored lights!



That’s a good list to start with! We’ll have more suggestions as the holiday season progresses! Be sure to keep an eye on this blog for more gift ideas!


Water Prisms

We’ve carried Water Prisms for a few years now, and they still never fail to impress. The idea is simple, make a glass structure with large sized facets – like a glass prism only larger, and fill it with water. The water acts as the transparent medium that breaks up the light into its component colors and makes rainbows on your walls!

Diamond Water Prism

Diamond Water Prism

Now in theory one could make such a prism out of solid glass or plastic but the cost would be prohibitive, not to mentions issues with the weight. So the best way is to make a faceted container and fill it with water to act as the prism. The trouble is while that is easy in theory, in practice many issues come up – especially with the water prisms leaking. This has caused problems in the past and discouraged some folks from have these prisms in their sunny windows.

However, the water prisms we sell are built using a proprietary technique that prevents the water from leaking! we have yet to see a single drop come out of one of these gorgeous prisms in the years we have had them on display. So the engineering  issues have been resolved, at least with the models we carry!

So how well do they work? I can only say we love it when we have a Water Prism in the window on a sunny day as it means that that we are assured some great rainbows throughout the store. For example right now we have one of the smaller water prisms – the single pyramid rainbow prism.

Pyramid Water Prism

Pyramid Water Prism

And today, being a sunny warm day in… November, we not only got a bunch of little rainbows around the room, but also this big one about 30 feet from the window!

HUUUGE Rainbow!

We get these quite often given our sunny window and the effectiveness of the water prisms!

Water Prisms are excellent gifts for anyone who has a sunny window. You might also consider the Rainbow Maker for creating lots of small, moving rainbows in your room!

The Amazing 7-in-1 Laser Pen (/Flashlight/UV Light/….)

Additional Note 8/26/14: Sadly this product has been discontinued by the manufacturer. There were some reliability issues but we feel they could have been solved. We are sorry to see this item go.


We were stunned when we first saw this little geek gadget. It just keeps on delivering goodies! Its the 7-in1 Laser Pen and that title doesn’t even begin to describe how much this little pocket sized tool can do!

First of all let’s have a look at it:

7-in-1 Laser Pen

So far, it seems simple.

Its kinda in the title, so no surprise

Of course, it is in the description, so we are certainly going to have a laser pointer in this thing. And we do. A class IIIa 650nm laser pointer is at work here.  Great for any purpose you might need a laser pointer for, which means pointing things out to friends or making cats go crazy.

Next up is the LED snake light. This is a standard white LED bulb that remains on after you push the button. The snake coil can be positioned almost anyway you like to shine light where you need it.  Press the flashlight button again and…


…you’ve got an ultraviolet light! This is another LED light that emits at 395-400nm and can be used to check special features on drivers licenses, credit cards, or to check UV sensitive invisible ink

Now of course, with all these gadgets and parts the old joke comes back about the watch with so many features it doesn’t have room to show what time it is.

Yup. It writes.

Well this should establish that this thing does actually have a pen in the laser pen,  and yes. It does write! Mind you, you will have to unthread that cap. It doesn’t just snap off like many pen caps. And there is a reason for that:

Wow! It grows!

That reason is that the cap is part of the pen’s extending magnetic pick up wand! At full extension (this is not show at full extension) it is over 17″ long and the magnetic cap can pick up any ferrous item that isn’t too heavy for it. Here we see it holding a flat watch battery (it was all we could find).

That’s quite a list of features! But wait, you want more? Well we did say this was a 7-in-1 Laser Pen, and so far we only have five. Well if you unscrew the central body you get this!

That’s right, is a mini flat-head screwdriver! A 2mm flat head screwdriver to be exact. Handy for certain electronics and other small screws!  But just in case you have to deal with electronics where a lot of philips-head screws are involved you can simply pull out the screwdriver head and flip it around to get:

What doesn’t this thing have?

A PH00 Philips-Head screwdriver! (You’ll have to take our word for it…this picture didn’t come out as well as we might have liked).

The Laser Pen has other features as well, such as a metal body and a sturdy pocket clip. The laser is FDA approved and all the lights run off 3 x AG3 batteries, the batteries are most certainly included!

Grab one of these awesome little gadget pens today!