We were asked by the lovely people at Rainbow Shapes (www.rainbowshapes.com) to have a play with their magnetic tiles and let you know what we thought.
My kids were so excited when they realised what was in the colourful box – lots and lots of magnetic tiles! They had hours of fun playing with them and creating different objects using the great variety of magnetic shapes.
Magnetic tiles are great STEM toys for all ages of children – particularly because they can become anything and so cater to all interests and abilities. They’re always a huge hit at play-dates and out in the forest during weePLAY or weeSTEMs sessions too!
Magnetic tiles are a great colourful and simple introduction to Engineering tasks – and because it’s all through play children don’t even know that their brains are working hard on the construction.
Looking at the tiles closely we explored the Science of how they worked – how the magnets are attracted to each other – but if placed too far over they repel each other.
They’re also fantastic for Mathematical concepts and language too:
- My youngest (age 2) practised his counting skills when counting down for the rocket to blast off
- My oldest (age 6) explored how 2D nets can transform into 3D shapes
- Both kids explored number by counting how many shapes we needed when planning to make a new object
- We explored colour and shape whilst talking about the different magnetic tiles
- It was a great hands-on opportunity to understand which shapes tesselate best and discover why some are better than others
In the 65 piece set there’s a great range of shapes and colours to explore – and it gives endless possibilities for what you can build and create.
In one afternoon we made:
- An oven (and cooked toy food in it)
- A rocket (using the template shown in the pamphlet that comes with the magnetic tiles)
- A train
- A car
- A cinema (and then put on a show)
- A turtle (design in the pamphlet)
- A house
- A burger
- Probably many other things that I’ve now forgotten – but the point is Rainbow Shapes are so open-ended they can be put together to create almost anything!
Kids have no limits when it comes to imaginative play – and so the boys easily incorporated other toys into their play. They added toy food into the ‘oven’ when cooking in their ‘new kitchen’, and also used Playmobil astronauts in their rocket.
Using magnetic tiles can encourage lots of independent play (which is a luxury for many parents!) as there’s so many ways they can be played with.
If your child is stuck for ideas you can choose one from the pamphlet that’s included with the pack, or read a book or watch a quick video on a topic your kid enjoys and then recreate it using the magnetic tiles or even build a solution to the problem in the story.
In conclusion, you know that weeSTEMs already absolutely loved magnetic tiles so why these ones over other ones on the market? Well, here are my reasons:
- They’re bright and colourful and I love that they are filled in (my other ones are magnetic frames)
- Rainbow Shapes are a small local business and (being a small business myself) I love supporting small and local whenever I can
- Their customer service is fabulous – and if you have any problems at all then they’re more than happy to help out
- Their website gives loads more information about magnetic tiles and even different ideas of things for you to make (including a really cool dinosaur!)
- Magnetic tiles are an absolutely brilliant STEM toy for any kid of any age and I’d definitely recommend having a set in your house