Magnatiles provide unlimited options for creativity. You would be surprised how long children play with them and how many ways they figure out to use them. Magnatiles are a great STEAM toy encouraging engineering, art, and mathematics. Here are 8 creative magnatiles ideas to set up for an activity that will keep your child engaged for hours.
8 Magnatiles Ideas: Learning Through Play!
1. Dinosaur Shape Sorting
Draw dinosaurs by tracing magnatiles of different shapes; reference the image above. Tape your traced dinosaur shapes to the bottom of your fridge or dishwasher. Set out all the shapes you used next to the fridge. See if your child can match the shapes to make the creation! Once they put one together, ask what it is they made.
Together, make a ramp. How can you be sure to make a strong base so it won’t fall when cars go down? Brainstorm together and maybe even draw it out like an architect. When you’ve finished putting it together, grab a few different cars. Which car goes the fastest and why do you think? Can your child find a hidden garage underneath?
3. Paperclip Counting
Tape written numbers onto magnetites, one through five, with scotch tape. If your child can’t identify written numbers yet, put the number of dots on the paper as well (similar to a domino). Put out paperclips and have your child count out the correct number, attaching them to the edges of the magnatiles.
4. Magnetic Puzzle
Print out a favorite image of your child’s, from a book or movie. Put enough magnatiles together so it fits on top. Tape it on by rolling scotch tape to the back. Then carefully use a knife on a cutting board to separate the pieces. Now, offer it to your child put together so they can recognize the picture. Take it apart and mix it up so your child can now have a chance. Talk them through it if they are having difficulty; find matching colors and shapes to put together.
Measure height with magnatiles. Either on your front door or garage, whichever is magnetic, have your child stand to be measured. Make a mark with painters tape and then count how many magnatiles it takes to reach the mark. What else can you measure and compare to your child’s height: the dog, a book, or favorite toy? The magnatiles make their own bar graph. Compare the differences and talk about it with open ended questions.
6. Color Sorting
Before your child wakes up in the morning or from nap, create different colored cubes. The magnatile cubes should each be created with a single color. On the top put a piece that has openings, like a window. Put out jumbo tweezers, spoons, and pompoms of the colors you created for each cube. Let your child sort the pompoms and work on their hand-eye coordination as well as fine motor skills.
7. Magnetic Spelling
Tape letters on the magnatiles and spell together, on the fridge. If your child is too young to spell, work on identifying the letter that starts their name and yours. Can they find two M’s for Mama? You can also use the letters to play Chicka Chika Boom Boom with a coconut tree print out adhered to the fridge.
8. Garage Maze
Have your child help create 5 small garages for matchbox size cars. Each garage should be all one color; for younger children you can prepare this ahead of time. Then on an 18×12 piece of white construction, draw a thick line to each garage zigzagging across the page (this will create a maze). Each line should be a different color, but lead to a matching colored garage. Finally, put out cars of those colors as well. Can your child take the red car on the red line to the red garage? Give it a try and make a different track on the back of the paper to try a new route!
There are many companies who make magnatiles. The most well known, but also most expensive are Magna-Tiles. Here are multiple different options below of tried and true magnatiles.
For more STEM activities to do with your child, check here! In addition check out our online class, Encouraging Curiosity & Learning Through Play! Remember that one of the perks of working with the nanny placement team at Boston Baby Nurse & Nanny is hiring an educated nanny. Once a nanny is placed with you they are given the opportunity to take three free online class!
This article contains amazon affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.
About The Author
Kelsey Dickson has over 15 years of experience working with children as a nanny, preschool teacher, and now a mother. She has her degree in Early Childhood Education and is a Certified Potty Training Expert. At Boston Baby Nurse & Nanny she is the eLearning and Social Media Manager. Check out our online childcare classes, such as Baby Sign Language and Sleep Coaching 101! In her free time she enjoys gardening with her son, going for walks with her husband and dog, and discovering local wineries in New England.