National Geographic Mega Crystal Growing Lab Review

Editor's rating:
10.0
Nela Cvetanovska
Reviewed by Nela Cvetanovska
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We like

A lovely glow up night-light display

8 different colors to choose from

5 real gemstones included

Entertaining scientific experiment

High-quality components and materials

Educational playtime activity

100% satisfaction guarantee

We don’t like

Difficulty in removing the seed rocks

How it works

If you have been struggling to get your children interested in science, join the club! Children these days are spending countless hours watching cartoons on Boomerang and Nickelodeon that the quest to offer them educational content on TV seems hopeless. But who can blame them? Everyone wants to escape to a wonderland filled with magical caves, glowing objects, and colorful adventures.

It looks like one of the largest nonprofit scientific organization might have found a solution to attract and educate the younger audience. National Geographic have come up with award-winning science kits that will bring a little enchantment into your own homes. By creating the National Geographic Mega Growing Crystal Lab, your children can embark into a whimsical journey filled with light-up experiments in the comfort of your living room.

And who knows? Maybe by the end of this knowledgeable mission, they will finally show interest in actually watching National Geographic and you can all enjoy its vast universe of ground-breaking content.

Origin

Origin

The tales of the magical powers that crystals hold are as old as time. Our ancestors have used them as healing talismans, peace offerings and sparkly accessories. Their charming looks are just the beginning. There are many legends surrounding these mysterious stones as they are known to hold vibrational energy which is a result of constant assembling and disassembling of bonds between molecules.

It would come as no surprise that the 126-year-old National Geographic Society would choose these gems and its glorious natural crystallization process as an inspiration for creating an entertaining yet educational kit. The whole idea is to prepare children for an A in Chemistry by encouraging them to try unconventional playtime activities.
Design

Design

The National Geographic Mega Crystal Growing Lab comes with 5 light up displays on a rock shaped nightstand and a plug-in charger which is great since batteries are not necessary for this product. Once you plug it in, make sure you hit the ON button and you will immediately notice the white led lights turn on.

The box also comes with different packages of colored powder which are the essential components for the crystal recipe. There are also smaller packages of seed rocks in the same colors who play an equally important part of the experiment. Four growing chambers are included which means that the whole experimenting can be done without messing up your home amenities. The cups are made of silicon which is extremely helpful since you can move them around in order to take out the grown crystals without damaging them.

You will also find the caution cardboard signs to place around the silicon growing boxes. A complementary stirring stick will be part of the package so you can feel as if you are in an actual lab while creating these magical crystals. A magnifying glass is provided for you to observe the process of crystallization and feel in control of your creation.

A STEM learning guide is a wonderful way for you to get the know the origin and healing powers each crystal holds. It is filled with vivid photos and detailed explanation of the importance of each and every one of these stones. Last but not least, is the growing lab translation guide which seems like a manual of instruction carefully adapted for children to understand it.

As a complimentary gift, National Geographic included 5 real gemstones that will undoubtedly end up being your lucky charms. You won’t need the for the actual growing crystal process yet will serve as an excellent goal of what the crystals would look like in its glorious form. Behold the majesties of the blue calcite, rose quartz, quartz geode, fluorite, and the lavender-colored amethyst.
Education

Education

You’ve might have been introduced to the crystallization process back in middle school during your chemistry classes. Some of us even tried to create a mandatory experiment and failed miserably. This is why National Geographic have picked up the finest ingredients and prepared a detailed and informative guide to make sure that their customers are not disappointed with their final results.

Through the National Geographic Mega Crystal Growing Lab, children will be educated about the importance of observation, research, proper timing and measurements in science. They will also have to be very patient for the results, however, once they put a glance on the final results, they will realize how their effort and patience has paid off.

It is a valuable journey on which your children will have to concentrate, experiment, follow instructions and take a leadership role and responsibility for their own steps. It is quite fascinating to see them enthusiastic about working in a scientific environment. The purpose is to show your children that anyone can do it with ease if you follow the manual correctly, and scientific endeavors should not feel boring and leave you discouraged in further exploring.
Entertainment Value

Entertainment Value

You might’ve called science boring but it would be impossible to get bored with this kit. It is almost as if you are making a magic spell that requires your full attention and focus. Children love play-pretend scenarios and in this one, they can be super smart scientists working in a hidden lab which happens to be your living room.

To start growing your crystals, you’re going to need boiling hot water, so as a responsible lab partner, make sure you help your child get the right temperature. It has also been advised that you don’t use aluminum boiling pots since they can interrupt the molecular process. One cup would be more than enough and you would want to put it in a glass bowl to avoid damaging any plastic containers.

Feel free to choose any color you prefer and pour the larger packaging while the temperature is right. Mix it up immediately until it’s completely dissolved. It will look very sugary while you are stirring it up, but don’t worry that’s the whole point. The silicon containers are properly marked so you can hit the right dosage for the crystal recipe. It might be hard to notice so make sure you help your child find it and pour the substance until you get to the fill line.

After that just let the solution cool for about 15 minutes which is a very convenient timeline to prepare the next color. Repeat the same process with another crystal. Make sure you clean the silicone cup so there isn’t any distinctive pigmentation left from the previous mixing. Once you are finished with the first step, do not forget about the crystal rocks as well. The look like a beautifully shaped oval rock that will fall and fit perfectly at the bottom of the silicon cup. While you are waiting patiently for the crystallization process, you might want to unpack the cardboard caution boxes. They are friendly reminders for your close ones and relatives that there is a very important system taking place in your environment, which shouldn’t be disturbed.

The silicon cup is meant to be placed inside the box, near a window, exposed to daylight, so the whole lab experience can go smoothly and uninterrupted. The big sign clearly says: Caution, experimenting in process, do not eat or drink around experiment! Since the colors of the cup seem very tasty and tempting especially for children who are known to want to drink anything with fake color in it.

Leave it for 7 to 10 days. After 10 days, you can take out the crystals from the bottom with a spoon and place them on paper towels to dry. Now you might be enchanted by its shape and form and eager to place them on the display, however, it is important to be very patient and wait for about 2 to 3 days in order for this lovely glowing figure to dry properly. On the bottom of each, you may notice the seed component, which is meant to pop out and be removed in order for the crystals to take the convenient shape for the display.

Try using a metal spoon instead of a plastic one, so you get more efficient results. If done properly, the crystals would take glorious mythical shapes as if you have collected them in a secret fantasy cave. It can be tricky pulling them up, but the silicon cup makes it really easier since you can work around and feel the structure of the crystal itself.

Don’t feel alarmed if there are tiny pieces of crystals falling apart, after all, it is a gentle and delicate ornament and it is not meant to be perfect. Each imperfection gives the crystal a genuine shape and adds to its character.
Sizing

Sizing

This kit’s dimensions are calculated at 5 x 8 x 10.2 inches and the box weighs less than 5 pounds. Even though the size of each individual crystal depends on the actual growing process, almost every finished result will be small enough to fit the light-up stand, yet big enough for your child to notice all its glorious details.

The crystal stand itself would fit perfectly on a shelf, a nightstand or as a desk ornament. It is meant to be discrete yet have an illuminating effect without disturbing the environment.
Price Range

Price Range

If you consider the fact that this is probably the best growing crystal kit on the market with electronic components to it, the price seems really affordable. After all, you are going to invest in an educational guide, a scientific experiment, and a lovely glowing ornament.

DIY crystal growing labs have been huge on the toy market however not many provide you with captivating results so you might want to spend your money on high-quality materials when experimenting. You also get 8 packages of crystal powder for a 5 display stand, so even if you somehow manage to break or damage your design, you can experiment furthermore.

It is also very reassuring that National Geographic offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee which means that if you are not content with the product, they will give you back your money, though we highly doubt you will be disappointed.

Age Range

The manufacturer recommended age for this product is 8-15 years since younger children might find this experiment too challenging. Adult supervision is recommended for the water heating part and providing additional help with the instructions is advised. The whole process is quite entertaining for grownups as well. It is a great group activity for family bonding and a way to redo that crystallization project you might’ve failed back in the days.

Keep in mind that children are notoriously famous for being impatient and rushing out, so they might want to skip the 10-day wait and interrupt the experiment by meddling around the silicon cups. It is great if they have their parents as lab partners who will help them out and guide them through the creative journey for impressive results.

Conclusion

The toy market is filled with adorable plush companions, make-up kits, vehicles, dolls and just when it seems like we’ve seen it all and grown tired of it, a magical crystal kit came along and captured our hearts. This product holds great scientific value and vast educational content. It is a learning adventure and an entertaining experiment you get to have from the comfort of your own home. Children are captivated by it, and so are adults.

If you are searching for an unconventional gift to approach your children to the world of National Geographic and bring knowledge and chemistry in your household, this crystal growing kit is definitely the choice you won’t regret. Not only you get to keep your final creation as a lovely decoration to your room, but you also get to experience its marvelous design and be reminded of the lovely memories you shared during the science project.
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