Magnetic Games

Magnets come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. They can even be combined with other materials to make ‘composites’.

‘Rubber magnets’ are composite materials. They are made from magnetic dust (iron powder) mixed with rubber solution and allowed to set.

Rubber magnets are usually brightly coloured and can be cut with scissors to make magnetic shapes which allow them to attach to a fridge door etc.

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This small disc magnet has been attached to the end of a string using sticky tape.

When we talk about magnets we should try to avoid saying that they ‘stick’ to things because they do not feel ‘sticky’ like glue. Instead they pull towards some materials eg. iron or other magnets.

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This ring magnet has been used to make a magnetic fishing rod for a fishing game.

Sticky back magnets are inexpensive and easy to attach to things eg. a card person and a straw.

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A ‘spinning man’ can be made by attaching a paper clip then suspending it from a stick-on magnet on the end of s straw. A gentle ‘blow’ makes the man spin.

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The person moves about as it follows the magnet on the end of the straw under the card sheet. This is great for football games or all sorts of imaginative game ideas.

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Making a box for a game is important because it helps keep all of the pieces together for storage.

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This is the simplest type of magnetic game to build but it’s still great fun.


A little bit of imagination, along with the knowledge that magnetism is a force which works through paper, results in some very original games like this one where the fish travels around it’s world looking for food or trying to do a challenge eg. going through the caves as quickly as possible.

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The fishing game above has a paper clip as a hook on the end of the string and small stick-on magnets on each fish. The pond looks great and so do the plants growing around the pond.

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Look carefully and you can see how a split pin fastener has been used to support the fish so that it is not lying flat and the head of the fastener is facing downwards where it is attracted to the magnet which is being moved around underneath the card box container.

This is one of my favourite ever magnetic games.


What will your game be like?

What are the rules going to be?

How will you know who wins?

How many magnets and paper clips will you need?

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