Materials to Purchase
- * 1 spool Thread
- 15 pair Scissors
- * 11 boxes of Paper Clips
- * 5 rolls of Masking Tape
- * 120 medium-sized Rubber Bands
- * 8 rolls Clear Tape
- * 1 box steel Straight Pins
- * 90 wooden spring-action Clothespins
- * 2 rolls Aluminum Foil
- * 60 size-D Batteries
- * 40 Flashlight Bulbs
- * 1 box fine-grade Steel Wool
- * 70 small Ceramic Magnets
- * 1 roll plastic-insulated Copper Wire
- * 30 medium-sized Nails
Available and Recycled Materials
- 1 Wall Clock with second hand sweep (or substitute wristwatches)
- 30 small Coins (pennies) of uniform size
- 15 Hand Calculators
- 30 medium-sized Cans
- 1 small package each of Pinto Beans, Popcorn, Lentils and long-grained Rice (or locally available seeds)
* 15 Bottle Caps
- 15 Pen Caps
- 1 handful of Scratch Paper
- 1 Water Source
- * 30 small glass Jars with Lids.
- 15 large glass Jars
- 1 package Table Sugar (used in one activity)
- 1 package Table Salt (used in one activity)
- local Insects and Animals to observe
- 1 ball String
- various Paints, Crayons, or Colored Pencils
- 1 handful Newspaper
- 1 small bag Potting Soil
- 1 roll Plastic Wrap
- 1 Notebook or supply of notebook paper
- 1 Pencil
- 1 Eraser
regular strength, 20 square feet x 12 inches rolls
Buy aluminum foil here as a convenience item, or for less in many grocery stores.
Baby Food Jars - assorted
Each set includes 4 small, 4 medium and 4 large glass jars.
These are basic workhorse brands, available everywhere.
Ideal for counting, uniform weights, and mini-containers to hold small portions of chemicals. These unused caps flare more widely than recycled caps. Used bottle caps, if unbent/undamaged, are an excellent free alternative.
These are handy lab items to keep in stock. We use them as bulb holders, tongs, clips, and more.
4.5 volt, with collar
This traditional filament bulb shines reliably bright (won't blow out) with 3 size-D batteries, yet still glows visibly with just 1 battery. Used in #19 Electricity, #32 Electricity, and #91 Global TOPS.
Tips on shopping elsewhere: Select bulbs with protruding metal 'collars' to facilitate secure integration into clothespin bulb-holders. Use just one bulb brand and resistance rating so all bulbs shine with equal brightness when powered by equal voltage.
Magnet - ceramic
rectangle, 3/16 inch thick
Your basic refrigerator magnet, about the width and length of a large postage stamp, with N and S poles on each face and a hole in the middle. A useful and popular science supply used in may TOPS titles. Purchase at least 2 per student.
Nails - 2 1/2 inch
steel carpenter's flat-head nail, 10-penny
Used in some TOPS titles. A surprisingly handy scientific supply.
size #1, steel, box of 100
Paper clips have 1001 uses in TOPS experiments, and science in general. Feel free to use paper clips you already have, but be aware that different brands come in different sizes and weights. In experiments where uniformity is important, don't mix brands.
Rubber Bands - assorted
10 grams each of thin, medium and thick
You get 30 grams of soft, strong, durable rubber bands: thin #16 (about 50), medium #32 (about 20), and heavy-duty #64 (about 10). These sizes are specifically selected to work in most TOPS experiments.
fine grade, unsoaped
A handy lab supply, for studying electricity. Each pad is about the size of a classic Shredded Wheat biscuit. Used in #11 Oxidation and #32 Electricity.
steel, one and 1/16 inch long
Used in many TOPS experiments. Sometimes required for their magnetic properties. Don't purchase aluminum straight pins by mistake.
Tape - clear
3/4 inch x 1000 inch roll
Your standard desk tape with matte write-on surface.
Tape - masking
3/4 inch x 55 yd roll
A handy science supply used in most TOPS modules.
light duty, 25 yd spool
Just plain old thread. Used in many TOPS titles, especially in Pendulums #34.
Wire - wrapping
100 feet, plastic insulated
Also called magnet wire or bell wire. This science-lab staple is used in #19 Electricity, #20 Magnetism, #33 Magnetism, and #91 Global TOPS.
Wrapping wire may be recycled from old motors or transformers. If insulated with paint rather than plastic tubing, end leads will need to be sandpapered clean, not stripped with pliers.