Making your own detective kit can not only save you money but will also give you a chance to personalize the kit to your own liking. Detective kits can be made with a variety of items from around the house or acquired through yard sales and thrift stores. Each detective kit should be age appropriate, but as a child grows, you can add new elements to keep the kit enticing for a child of any age. A little creativity can go a long way to creating the perfect detective kit.
Decorate a canvas bag with fabric markers. One idea for decorating is to write your child's first initial followed by her last name. Underneath her name write out crime scene investigator or detective. Depending on the size of the items you plan on including in the kit will determine the size of the bag you will need.
Search thrift stores or your home for a few detective items. A magnifying glass and containers for a fingerprinting kit can all be found used. You may also be able to find dress-up clothes such as suits and ties or uniform costumes, for your little detective.
Purchase different sizes of notebooks. Make sure you keep a few extras on hand so that you are prepared to refill the detective kit. Also purchase pens and pencils that are appropriate for your child. Include a small container for writing utensils so that they are not lost in the bottom of the bag.
Make a fingerprinting kit. Baby powder or cocoa in a small tin or plastic container, tape and a large make-up brush are all you need. The container used for baby powder or cocoa should contain a screw-on lid to keep the powders contained. Place the items in a larger container.
Add a motion powered flashlight to the kit. There are many flashlights that you shake in order to charge them and they require no batteries. This will save you money in the long run.
Check thrift stores or resale shops for a used digital camera. Digital cameras save you money on printing photographs and let children review the pictures they have taken. If you find a camera that has under 5 mega pixels you will save money. Remember to include either regular alkaline batteries or rechargeable batteries that fit the camera.
Purchase a used, small laptop for an older child who wants to become an investigator when they are older. Children can not only pretend to prepare reports and save pictures but they will also be practicing their typing skills. A compact scanner that can be attached to the computer will give your child the ability to upload fingerprints.
As a child gets older you may want to include a microscope and slides.
Be prepared to refill the fingerprint kit, notebook and writing materials on a regular basis.