I am a big fan of Instructables, the web site dedicated to user-generated DIY projects. There’s so much to see and build there, plus, it’s a great place to brainstorm ideas. A couple of weeks ago, a friend told me about a project that turns your smart phone into a microscope with just $10 worth of parts from the hardware store. I had to try it out.
Assembly only requires simple tools, which you should be able to easily track down if you don’t own them already, and takes less than half an hour to put it all together. You can focus by raising and lowering the lower specimen tray and a small LED light will help illuminate plant cells or paper fiber from below. The results aren’t perfect, but they are fairly impressive, as seen in the samples above. It’s a great weekend project and one that will teach the kids a thing or two, as well. GeekDad approved!