Review: STEM Subscription Box fromWeekend Box Club

By Gabriel, aged 8

I love science and engineering more than anything, so when my Mum told me that Weekend Box Club had sent me their new STEM box to try I was very excited!

The box looked like a normal craft box but inside were different labelled envelopes and a book telling me about the human body and the projects I could do to learn more about it.

They sounded really great so I decided to get stuck in right away!

The first thing I did was to grow my own bacteria, to learn about the bacteria in our own bodies! I know about bacteria so thought it would be very interesting to see how much is around me.

The box gave me a petri dish (cool!!), some agar, a stock cube and some cotton buds.

Mum gave me sugar and some water and then I found a sauce pan, a jug and a mixing spoon!

The instructions were easy to follow and I didn’t need my mum’s help, apart from when I had to heat up the mixture. I did it myself but mum watched me to make sure I was safe.

After I had heated up my mixture I poured it into the petri dish and waited for it to go hard.

Then the instructions told me to go and wipe my cotton buds on something that I thought would have lots of bacteria. Mum says that Dad’s car is dirty so I thought it would be a good place to test!

I wiped the steering wheel all over and then wiped the cotton buds inside the petri dish.

I then had to put the dish somewhere nice and warm out of Jude’s reach because he is a toddler. After three days there was lots of bacteria for me to see. Disgusting! My mum said she wasn’t surprised.

My second activity was making my own paper bag lungs. There was a picture of two lungs in my book and I had to copy the pictures on to the two paper bags that came in the activity box.

When I had finished I put two straws in the top, sealing up the top of the bags afterwards.It was tricky taping them up so there were no holes in the top, so Mum helped me with that bit.

I was really pleased with my lungs at the end and they worked too!

The third activity in my box was to make robotic hands using card, straws, string and elastic bands.

I drew around my mum’s hand and then cut it out. Then I cut and stuck down pieces of straw and mum threaded string through them all and put elastic bands on each one.

When it was finished my hand’s fingers moved when I pulled the strings which was very impressive!

I really enjoyed my STEM box. It was interesting and I haven’t done any of the stuff before. I want to get another one to see what else there is to do.

Note from Mum: I was impressed with the STEM subscription box from Weekend Box Club - a lot of thought had obviously gone into how to teach children about STEM in a fun way. The prose was engaging without talking down to its reader and the instructions were simple enough for Gabriel to do the majority on his own. The box was pretty self contained, even including sellotape. We had everything else we needed in the kitchen so could do everything right away — a definite plus with excited kids. Gabriel had a lot of fun and the activities really caught his imagination. I’m looking forward to seeing what future boxes look like.

Thanks to Weekend Box Club for sending us a box to review.