MagnaTiles are a wonderful toy for children two years and up. They become especially relevant for children who are interested in learning more about mathematical and geometrical concepts (ages 4 and 5), but entertain little construction workers as well.
Offer the MagnaTiles to children in a box, bin or tupperware. MagnaTiles can also be used on dry-erase boards/grease-boards. It may interest children if the bin is a metal, because the MagnaTiles will stick to it. Make sure the container holding the MagnaTiles is near a flat area where children can dump the pieces out and build on a flat, sturdy surface (floor, table, etc…). Most children will begin by playing with the MagnaTiles in a 2-dimensional way and will eventually learn how to build 3-dimensional structures. (See above for examples.) While it takes hand-eye coordination and concentration to be able to create a 3-dimensional structure, even young children will have fun grappling with geometric concepts as they stick triangles to the outside of squares or make one big square with four smaller squares. Children are introduced to the complex concept of fractions without stress or agony, just fun. Younger children will enjoy sorting the shapes and colors as well.
Let children play and experiment with the MagnaTiles in their own way. Try not to intervene to show them “how” to use them. I like to build quietly on my own and sometimes they notice what I am doing and are challenged to attempt the same task. Keep the instruction sheet as it displays example structures that can be challenging to recreate.
MagnaTiles are rather expensive, but are still worth purchasing. They are stimulating toys that will be played with for years and will be handy manipulatives for homework help in the elementary school. The Intelligent Nest gives MagnaTiles 5 Nests out of 5- excellent, well made and highly engaging!