Choosing a Telescope for a Child

Recommendation 2: Get a 3 to 6 inch Telescope
Size is the most important consideration when choosing a telescope because it indicates the light-gathering ability and what you'll be able to see. Size refers to the diameter of the main mirror or lens.

While any telescope will allow you to view the moon and brighter targets like Jupiter and Saturn, a larger one will make it easier to also view DSOs (deep space objects) like galaxies, nebulas and star clusters. There are thousands of these and, the larger the telescope, the brighter they will appear.

So the bigger the telescope the better, right? YES -- but only up to a point because larger telescopes are also bulkier and heavier making them harder to manage.

We recommend a 3" (80mm) to 6" (150mm) telescope for children because these are large enough to reveal many wonderful DSOs but certain ones are still small enough to be managed by children.

 
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