5 Ways to Play with Magnatiles
What is the one material you should buy to add more STEM to your home or classroom? Magna-tiles. Magnatiles have been popping up a lot in our posts lately. These are an excellent material to practice basic engineering and math skills with young children. They are absolutely our favorite material on the shelves today and have been for the past year. They inspire creativity, building skills, and endless imaginary play. Furthermore, they are durable and great for a huge range of ages. Still not convinced? Below are our 5 favorite ways to play.
(affiliate links are included below.)
1. Add People, Cars, etc.
We have small containers and baskets of cars and people and various loose parts in our block area. These get rotated frequently, but the Little People and small cars are a favorite. They get naturally integrated into most of our block play. Our preschoolers particularly enjoy building houses for the people right now. Every house gets a little family and soon we have a room full of houses creating a little neighborhood.
2. Outside in the Sunlight
Magnatiles are fabulous outside because the light shines through them and casts colorful shadows on the ground. One of the easiest ways to change up play is to move it to a different environment. Outside on the patio is our favorite place to play with our magnatiles.
3. On Light
Similar to outside in the sunshine, Magnatiles work great on a light table or box. The light glows through them and the colors are impossible to resist. Our light table is the perfect height for them to stand and build. Their structures are often larger and more complicated when they are standing and building at the light table.
4. On Mirrors
We love building on mirrors. The mirror adds another dimension to their building. They are building up and down at the same time and this is fascinating.
5. To Practice Math Skills
Magnatiles are the perfect material for practicing math skills. They offer hands on ways to explore and discuss colors and shapes. The magnatile kits are filled with squares and triangles of different sizes. The blocks are also made of all the colors that make up the rainbow. You can use your Magnatiles to sort colors and shapes, make patterns, and explore how shapes and colors fit together.
What size pack of Magna-tiles should I buy?
We have two sets of magnatiles, both the 32 piece set and the 48 piece set. Together they are enough for two children to happily build together. If you have one child, I would start with the 48 piece set. That all being said, the 100 Piece Set is on our wishlist because we love these so much. Ours have all been purchased through Amazon (I included affiliate links you can visit if interested) Update: We got a third set for Christmas and now have 2 48 piece sets.
Do you have to have a light table to play with Magna-tiles?
No! Magnatiles are awesome on a light table, but I know everyone doesn't have a light table and I do not think a light table is needed to enjoy this material.
How old should my child be before I buy a set of Magna-tiles?
Magnatiles are great for children ages 2 and up. We got ours when our kids were 3, but we have had kids over for playdates ages 2-10 that have all loved the Magna-tiles and my husband secretly loves to build with them as well.
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