Did you know that 75% of children think that humans will one day live in outer space or on other planets?
Children have fascinating ideas about what space is like and are often eager to learn more about that topic. The best telescopes for kids can help nurture that interest and allow your child to learn while having fun.
How to Choose a Telescope for Your Child
Here are a few things to consider when choosing a telescope:
- Type. You can find refractor, reflector, and compound telescopes. A reflector telescope is a good option since it’s lightweight and compact, but a compound telescope would be a better option for astrophotography.
- Aperture. The aperture is the diameter of the lens or mirror of the telescope. A larger aperture will let more light in and deliver a brighter and sharper image.
- Focal length and magnification. The focal length is the distance between the lens or mirror and the image. You can divide the focal length of the telescope by the focal length of the eyepiece to get the magnification.
- Ease of use. Choose a telescope with a closed tube design to reduce maintenance, and think about getting a lightweight mount or tabletop telescope for easy setup.
Our Telescope Recommendations
We recommend comparing these different telescopes to find the one that is most adapted to your child’s age.
I. Portable Telescopes for Kids
The best telescopes for kids should be easy to set up to encourage your child to use it regularly.
1. Celestron PowerSeeker 127EQ Telescope
Magnification: 50x or 250x
This portable reflector telescope is a great option for beginners since it’s easy to use and comes with educational software your child can use to learn about space. The telescope comes with two eyepieces and a 3x lens to increase magnification
|Get accurate results with the slow-motion altitude rod.||Manual mount requires some getting used to.|
|Switch between 50x and 250x eyepieces.|
|Small and lightweight design.|
2. Gskyer Telescope
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Magnification: up to 120x
This portable telescope is a fun option for beginners. The topics feature cross-hair lines to help your child locate objects, and you can switch between a 16x and 40x eyepiece to adjust the magnification or increase it with the 3x lens. The adjustable tripod makes the telescope versatile, and you can sync the telescope with an Android or iOS device to access additional features.
|It comes with two eyepieces and a 3x lens.||Tripod isn’t as sturdy as other products.|
|Wireless control with your phone.|
|High-quality optics coatings.|
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II. Telescope Bundles for Kids
Telescope bundles come with additional eyepieces and accessories that will enhance your child’s experience.
1. Meade Instruments Adventure Scope
Magnification: 22x or 67x
This telescope bundle comes with a performing refractor telescope, two eyepieces, a tripod, and a backpack. It’s a lightweight telescope that is convenient to bring on a trip.
|Two magnification levels, 22x or 67x.||Other bundles have more accessories|
|It comes with a sturdy and lightweight aluminum tripod.|
|Store everything in the backpack.|
2. Telmu Telescope 70mm Aperture Refracting Telescope
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Magnification: 16x or 67x
This bundle comes with a refractor telescope, a sturdy tripod, two eyepieces, and a phone adapter. Your child will also get a backpack to carry their telescope bundle. The scope is an interesting feature since it uses cross-hair lines to help your child find objects.
|Two levels of magnification, 16x, and 67x.||Other telescopes have a slightly larger aperture.|
|It comes with a phone adapter.|
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III. Telescopes for Kids Ages 6 and Under
You can find some telescopes designed for young children with a simple design that will nurture their interest in science.
1. Merkmak Telescope for Kids
Magnification: 18 to 60x
This sturdy and inexpensive telescope is ideal for a young child. It comes with an eyepiece designed to focus on the moon easily, and two additional eyepieces your child can use to adjust the magnification between 18 and 60x.
|Get clear images thanks to coated optics.||Aperture is limited compared to other telescopes.|
|Spot the moon with the special eyepiece.|
|Simple focusing system.|
2. SkySpy 70mm Refractor Telescope
Magnification: 16 to 200x
If you have a young child who is passionate about space, this telescope is an ideal way to nurture their interest with its 200x magnification. The Finderscope is a convenient feature that will help your child spot and track objects, and the adjustable tabletop tripod will easily adapt to your child’s height.
|It comes with three eyepieces.||Setting up the lenses and eyepieces might be too complex for a young child.|
|You will get two 1.5x and 3x lenses.|
|Fun and easy to use.|
IV. Telescopes for Kids Ages 7 to 11
Kids in that age group will want to start learning more about space and optics.
1. Qurious Spade Kid’s Explorer Telescope
Magnification: up to 66x
This telescope kit is an excellent beginner’s telescope for children because it comes with a user manual and an activity guide adapted to the 7 to 11 age range. Your child can switch between the two eyepieces to adjust the magnification and use the compass and charts that come with the telescope to find objects.
|It comes with two eyepieces.||Other telescopes are more performing.|
|Adjustable magnification up to 66x.|
|Learn about space and optics with the activity guide.|
2. ToyerBee Telescope 76mm Aperture
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Magnification: 35 to 350x
This reflector is an ideal choice for a child who is passionate about space. It comes with a finder scope so your child can locate different objects, and the magnification goes up to 350x to get an amazing level fo details when looking at the moon or other planets.
|It comes with a 2x Barlow lens.||Design is bulkier than other telescopes.|
|Switch between three eyepieces.|
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V. Telescopes for Kids Ages 12 and Up
If you have a teen who is passionate about astronomy, we recommend investing in high-quality optics so they can observe space with a clear image.
1. Celestron PowerSeeker 50AZ Telescope
Magnification: 30 to 150x
This telescope bundle is perfect for a teen because it’s lightweight and portable. Your child can use the four different eyepieces to adjust magnification, and spot objects thanks to the viewfinder. We think this telescope is an amazing educational toy because it comes with software your child can use to learn about space and astronomy.
|Coated optics for quality images.||Software is too complex for young children.|
|Adjust the magnification from 30 to 150x.|
|Learn about space and find objects with educational software.|
2. Emarth Telescope
Magnification: 51 or 128x
We like this telescope because it’s quick and easy to setup. The coated optics and 70mm aperture deliver outstanding image quality, and your child can find objects thanks to the finder scope. The telescope comes with two eyepieces to increase the magnification to 51x or 128x. The telescope comes with a sunshade so you can observe objects in the daytime.
|Adjustable aluminum tripod.||Doesn’t come with educational software or guide.|
|Find objects thanks to the 5×24 finder scope.|
|Increase magnification with the 3x Barlow lens.|
VI. Best Budget Telescope for Kids
A budget telescope is worth considering if your child is showing an interest in astronomy but isn’t ready to commit to a new hobby.
1. AW 50mm Kid Beginner Astronomical Refractor Telescope
Magnification: 18 to 90x
This entry-level telescope is a fun way to discover how telescopes work. The magnification level goes up to 90x, which is sufficient to observe the moon. It’s easy to use, and your child will figure out how optics work thanks to the different eyepieces included.
|It comes with two eyepieces.||Not as performing as other telescopes.|
|Increase the magnification with the 1.5x erecting eye.||You can’t adjust the tripod.|
|Sturdy and easy to use.|
2. MaxUSee Kids Telescope
Magnification: up to 32x
This bundle comes with a child-friendly telescope and a 10x monocular that your child can use to observe wildlife. We like this telescope because there is a built-in compass that will help your child locate objects, and it delivers crisp images for the price range.
|It comes with two eyepieces and a moon mirror.||Performance is inferior to other telescopes.|
|Find objects with the built-in compass.|
|Observe wildlife with the monocular.|
VII. Best Premium Telescopes for Kids
A premium telescope can be the perfect gift for a child who loves everything related to space and who is familiar with telescopes.
1. Celestron NexStar 5SE Telescope
Magnification: 18 to 295x
This high-end telescope is one of the best options for advanced users. It features a motorized mount that locates and tracks objects automatically. The aperture and magnification deliver an image quality that is far superior to the average amateur telescope.
|Sync the telescope with a phone or computer.||There is a learning curve for using the computerized mount.|
|Track objects automatically with the computerized mount.|
|Get incredible images, thanks to the large aperture.|
Our selection of the best telescopes for kids should help you find the ideal gift for your child. Remember to choose a telescope adapted to their age and level of knowledge about space and optics since a telescope designed for advanced users can be frustrating.
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