Although the project supplies are neatly packaged and organized by lesson number, the kit seemed to omit key items (such as potting soil to mix with the peat moss, bleach for making leaf skeletons, and bulbs for forcing bulbs project) and included way too many common household items like paper towels, plastic bags, and a sharpened pencil. I did not feel we got $64 worth of educational value from the kit.
My children love the experiments in the Apologia Young Explorer series; but, as I looked through the Botany book, I was overwhelmed at the thought of gathering what we would need to do the experiments - both for my own homeschoolers and the small science co-op we are in. This kit was definitely the answer! I was impressed that it has a notebook, marker, ruler and magnifying glass as part of the "miscellaneous kit." I think it has everything we need except water and live plants!!! Everything is wonderfully organized and clearly labeled. I have already marked kits for future books as part of my curriculum "must haves".
My children LOVE science experiments and beg to do them! They learn more and retain it better hands on. The experiments are separated and labeled by lessons. All my children crowd around. Had I the money I would have ordered 5 separate botany labs, so they could each have their own. Yes, one can buy items cheaper else where, individually. If you love shopping & know where to look save money. I have an over-whelming schedule, have never enjoyed shopping, cannot keep prices / places straight. I tried one year to purchase the items on my own... Result we skipped labs, children did not learn as much and were sad. Having organized experiments is WELL WORTH the little extra money. (I went to 4 stores one time hunting for one item for a desired experiment... Never did find the item) this kit is so much less stress!!
I have purchased science kits through other companies in the past but they were always lacking in items. They were often labeled as common household items. This kit is wonderful! We can always count on having exactly what we need when it's time to do an experiment! Even if it's something simple like paper towels or cooking oil. I love that each lesson is individually bagged and labeled. It makes finding what we need easy.
All I can say is WOW!!! I opened the box today and am amazed at how well organized everything is! They have pretty much everything you need, except living plants- even paper towels and a permanent marker. On top of that, everything is divided and labeled in neat little ziploc bags by lesson- it doesn't get much more convenient than that! My 15 year old is going to teach Botany to my 11 and 8 year olds next year, so this makes things MUCH easier on him- but even if I was the one teaching the course, I WOULD so appreciate this kit!!!! Maybe I appreciate it even more because now I don't have to worry whether he has all the supplies he needs :-)