Microscope Activities – Including a Purchase Guide & Resources

One of the staple purchases you want to make for your homeschool science studies is a microscope. From the early elementary years you can begin with basic microscope activities, building up to full blown usage for biology study in the high school years.

Microscope Activities - Includes Purchase Guide & Resources from Starts At Eight. Learn what features to look for in a microscope, engage in learning the parts of a microscope, participate in microscope activities, and check out other microscope resources and books. Great for homeschoolers of ages - elementary, middle school and high school alike!

Microscope activities can easily begin in the elementary years. While students at this age may not be able to prepare their own slides, they can certainly learn basic microscope structure and usage. This will lay a solid foundation for microscope use in high school biology.

Purchasing a Microscope

AmScope M620B Compound Monocular Microscope

This is the AmScope M620B Compound Monocular Microscope that we own and love. Fairly basic in features, but a solid and affordable option.

A microscope may just be one of the biggest homeschool science purchases you make. While you don’t need to have a top of the line microscope, there are certain features you may want to consider before purchasing.

Microscope Features to Consider

These features start with the basics that you want to have (first 3) and increase to more complex, less needed features. Sticking to basics will help keep the overall cost down, but you may want to consider other features based on your personal needs.

  • Rotating eyepiece
  • Magnification levels of at least 40, 100, and 400x
  • Fine and course focus controls
  • LED or cool florescent light source (these differ in energy and heat output)
  • Cordless or corded (having a battery powered microscope could be useful in tight spaces or with little ones moving about.
  • Mechanical stage vs. stage clips (mechanical help to provide easier movement of the slide while viewing)
  • Iris diaphragm for better control of the amount of light on your slide
  • Oil immersion lens (used in advanced or microbiology study)
  • There are also specialty microscopes such as Stereo and dissecting microscopes. Stereo microscopes are designed for viewing whole objects such as minerals, insects, stamps, and coins, although they can also be used to view slides. They have lower magnification power than compound microscopes.
  • And a digital microscope which you can use it to save, edit, and share still and video images of specimens. Display the magnified images on your computer, project them onto a screen, and send them by e-mail. Imaging software lets you zoom, count cells, create reports, and more.

Where to Purchase a Microscope

Microscope Activities & Resources

Parts of a Microscope

10 FREE Microsope Part Worksheets including a word search, crossword puzzle, multiple choice, labeling activity and more!

Microscope Books


Microscope Activities

Microscope Activities & Projects

Microscope Activities on Pinterest
For high schoolers, once they have mastered these skills and had fun enjoying these basic microscope skills and experiments, they will be ready for a high school level science such as DIVE Science.

DIVE Science Review from Starts At Eight