Five Things to do with Magnetic Letters/Numbers

I’m going to start a little “Five Things to do with…” series which I’m kicking off with magnetic letters/numbers. About time eh? After all they are only my actual LOGO aren’t they?!

This is the kind of item you buy because you think you should. Your child is perhaps pre-school age and you feel like this would be an excellent thing to own. Good parent, well done me. So you buy them, stick them on the fridge and then think, “well now what do we bloody do?” The kids show interest for 30 seconds and then you’re stuck. Yep, I was too.

So here’s 5 quick ideas I’ve come up with for what to do with them:

The Quarry. Set up a little train track or road. If you don’t have either of these use a bit of masking tape to make a road (draw marker lines along the middle for added effect if you fancy!) Make little piles of the letters at various points. Get a train or a digger or a truck that can carry small items and send them along to collect the piles and bring them back to the ‘quarry’ (a baking tray)

Knock Down. Stick them to a radiator. Get a small ball – like a squash ball or a juggling ball and sit leg length away. Take it in turns to try and knock them off. Each time you knock one down you keep it. The winner is the one with the most.

Fishing Bingo. Put the letters in a non-magnetic container. Now you need some items to make a fishing rod. They can be anything. I used a wooden spoon, a bit of string and a bottle opener out of an xmas cracker. You just need the ‘hook’ to be something metal. Then let them dip the rod into the letter pond and see what they can fish out. To add a competitive element you could make bingo cards with letters and numbers to match what’s in the container. Four letters/numbers per card and the first one to match what is fished out wins.

Hide and Seek. Give them ten letters. Tell them they have to find places in the house the letters will stick to and hide them for you. Once they’ve hidden them all you have to find them, which gives you a chance to talk about the kind of materials that are magnetic or not. Alternatively you could hide them and give ‘warmer/colder’ clues to find them, or even draw a little treasure map if you have more than 5 minutes.

Name that Toy. Get five soft toys or items. Give them all names if they don’t already have names. Get five paper clips or safety pins and attach them to the toys. Find magnetic letters that match the first letters of the toys’ names and play match the letter to the toy. Once they get it right they stick the letter to the paper clip on the correct toy.

Also – did you know the letters/numbers with a full magnetic backing to them can be used as stamps on those magna-doodle writing board things? Handy for learning spellings, phonics, tricky words etc.

So there you have it. Some stuff to do with those letters. All take five minutes. ENJOY!

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