Posted by Fred Koenig on Feb 14th 2023
5 Best Budget Classroom Microscopes for the School Year
Buying microscopes for schools can be a difficult task, especially if you have a budget to consider. Microscopes are fantastic tools, opening a world of insight and curiosity for some children, inspiring future careers in others, and prompting all of them to think beyond what they can see on the surface.
The problem is weighing the features and qualities you need for your students against a budget. The following tips will help you shop for a classroom microscope that checks all of your boxes.
Construction and Durability
Depending on the age of the children, durability and portability will be a big concern. Microscopes used in schools have many different users who often have no experience with microscopes. Durability and even some built-in safety features can prevent damage. You want to invest in a durable piece of equipment that can stand a little abuse. If you buy something that’s too fragile or too inexpensive, it might break and end up costing more in the long run.
Ease of Use
Introducing students to something new can be a challenge and you’ve got a lesson plan to keep up with. Microscopes that are easier to use are best in the classroom. Look for something that has plug-and-play qualities, allowing for minimal adjustments and rapid accessibility.
Type and Application
One of the most important considerations when purchasing a classroom microscope is how it’s going to be used and what type of microscope works best. If your students are working with large specimens then a lower magnification level is good enough. Stereo microscopes often fit the requirements for biology dissection, studying insects, plants, fossils, and more.
Compound microscopes are used when greater magnification is needed in the classroom. Compound microscopes use a slide for viewing which requires preparation and careful handling. A light source is also very important for viewing and can be an expensive part of the microscope.
Compound microscopes typically show up in biology classrooms and with older students while stereo microscopes work better in geology or botany classes and with younger students who are getting a closer view of the world around them.
Image Display and Sharing
Modern microscopes often have the ability to display the results through wireless technology. This adds expense initially to one microscope, but it can drastically cut costs in the long run. Being able to show an entire classroom the same image can homogenize the learning experience and speed up learning
It’s still important for every student to have some hands-on time with a microscope, but by using a sharing function, you can cut down on the number of microscopes needed in the classroom.
Five Best Budget-Friendly Classroom Microscope
Now that you know what to look for when purchasing a microscope, we think this list of budget-friendly microscopes is a great place to start shopping.
- The modern MicroBlue Monocular LED Microscope is an entry-level microscope designed for students, classrooms and educational applications. Easy to use and can withstand years of usage due to its construction and usage of top-class materials. The MicroBlue has built-in rechargeable batteries which allow for cordless operation.
- The ACCU-SCOPE EXM-150 Microscope is an excellent choice for high schools, middle schools, technical institutes, hobbyists and home school applications. A newly designed LED illumination system provides bright, even illumination in both corded or cordless operation.
- The affordable Meiji MT-10 LED Biological Microscope offers beginning life science students clear visibility to a variety of samples with superb optical quality and crisp, clear cool LED illumination. Educators benefit from a compact, easy to store, maintenance free microscope with high level optical quality for basic Biological courses.
- The OPTIKA B-61 Monocular Cordless LED Microscope is ideal for students just getting started with the world of microscopy. Features LED illumination with rechargeable batteries and is slim and easy to carry.
- The ACCU-SCOPE EXC-121-3 Monocular LED Microscope has been engineered to deliver exceptional value and performance for clinical and educational applications. The microscope comes equipped with sharp, high contrast objectives and features ergonomic focusing controls, all brass gears and the widest field of view eyepieces in its class. The rugged, die-cast aluminum frame is designed for years of heavy use and is excellent for classroom use.
Making Your Classroom Microscope Purchase
Introducing students to microscopy is a fun moment for many teachers. We want to make purchasing your microscope just as exciting. Microscope International is here to help you select the right tools for your lessons with confidence and the support of our free service protection plan with every microscope purchase.