Are preschoolers interested in magnets?

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on February 11, 2011

in Centers, Classroom Setup, Magnetic Play, The Value of Play

I would have to answer the question to the title of this post as a big “YES”!

What caught my attention about today’s play with magnets was that the little boy was playing with the magnetic toys on the side of a book shelf….

At first, I thought the entire side of the shelf was magnetic but after looking a little closer, I realized that he had discovered that only the screws were magnetic and was engaged in this most unusual discovery and play…

Other children were playing with the magnetic toys as well in their own way. I often see the children turn the magnetic toys into microphones…

And building tall towers…

But I have to give this little one a hand for the most creative and out of the box idea I have seen so far. Through his play, he was discovering how many magnets can line up before falling down and which side of the magnets will attract and which will repel.

Letting children have time to freely explore their environment can lead to wonderful discoveries and opportunities for learning.

I would have ever thought to integrate the magnetic toys with the screws on the side of the bookshelf – I have learned something new about our learning environment and the ingenuity of the children in this class just by observing.


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Comments on this entry are closed.

1 casey February 12, 2011 at 7:51 am

Where do you find these great magnet toys?

2 Deborah J. Stewart February 12, 2011 at 11:46 pm

Hi casey – I am going to have to find out when I go back to the school next week where they got the magnets. I will ask and come back here to leave the information!

3 Scott February 12, 2011 at 8:43 am

I love those magnets. I haven’t seen them either.

And I love the experimentation that the boy did to discover that the magnets would stick to the screws. So cool!

4 Deborah J. Stewart February 12, 2011 at 11:46 pm

Isn’t it cool Scott? I was really intrigued as I watched:)

5 Denise February 12, 2011 at 10:58 am

I LOVE THIS! Yes, where did you find those cool magnets?

6 Deborah J. Stewart February 12, 2011 at 11:45 pm

I am going to have to find out when I go back to the school next week where they got the magnets. I will ask and come back here to leave the information!

7 Pip February 12, 2011 at 4:16 pm

it is great fun to observe children and see how they explore and use the rescources around them. and then use what YOU have learnt to help them extend THEIR learning! Learning from eachother. Kids have so much to teach us!!
Thanks for sharing!

8 Deborah J. Stewart February 12, 2011 at 11:43 pm

You are so right Pip! I was totally amazed when I realized he had discovered that small magnetic space in the room! I wonder what else might be magnetic in the classroom?

9 Kristi @ Creative Connections for Kids February 13, 2011 at 8:02 am

My kids and families love magnet activities. I’m interested in knowing where you found these too. :)

10 Susana Ramos February 13, 2011 at 9:37 am

Hello! I really enjoyed visiting your blog. It is very interesting and has very creative ideas. I’m Susan branches of the kindergarten blog, visit me at

11 Deborah J. Stewart February 13, 2011 at 10:10 am

I will be sure to stop by!

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