The Magic of Magnets

These sticky activities inspire curiosity and creativity.



The Magic of Magnets

What you need: 

  • large and small magnets 
  • metal objects, such as spoons, paper clips, metal washers 
  • nonmetal materials such as fabric, paper, plastic, and wood 
  • self-adhesive magnetic strips 
  • art materials such as felt, buttons, glitter gel, yarn, sequins, and glue 

What to do:

  1. The metal experiment: Invite your child to investigate and explore how magnets work, using the metal and nonmetal objects. Ask her to observe. How many materials were attracted to the magnets? What do those materials have in common? Why weren't the other materials attracted to the magnet? Experiment with magnets of different sizes. How many objects can the large magnet pick up at one time? Can the smaller magnet do the same?
  2. Push-and-pull study: Give your child several magnets to experiment with. Encourage her to put two large magnets together. Do they repel each other? What does that feel like? Do they stick to each other? Encourage her to pull them apart and to describe how that feels.
  3. Make a magnet: Set out art materials and invite your child to design her own magnets. She can make a person or animal or just a decorative collage. Apply a piece of self-adhesive magnetic strip to the back of any material. She can also attach magnetic strips to the back of her favorite drawings or paintings. 
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