Collect items that can be picked up with a magnet, such as a metal
paper clip, a frozen juice can lid, a washer, and a screw, and items
that cannot be picked up by a magnet, such as a rubber ball, a cotton
ball, a small plastic toy, and a piece of paper. Let your child use
a magnet to sort the items into two piles, picked up by a magnet and
not picked up by a magnet. What did the items the magnet picked up
have in common? (They were all metal.)
Hunt for Magnets
Collect several refrigerator magnets. Hide magnets on metal surfaces
throughout your home, such as the refrigerator, the stove, a file
cabinet, the washing machine, and a metal toy. Tell your child that
you have hidden magnets all around your home. Help your child think
of things in your home that are metal where a magnet might "stick."
Then let him or her go on a hunt to find the magnets.
| Magnetic Race
Your child will love to play this magnetic racing game. Draw a simple
race track on a sheet of thin cardboard. Glue a strong magnet to the
bottom of a toy car. Place the car on top of the race track. Hold
a magnet underneath the cardboard, directly below the car. Slowly
move the magnet along the bottom of the cardboard to make the car
move. "Race" the car around the track as fast as you can
without running off the track.
Collect a variety of novelty magnets or make your own by cutting pictures
out of greeting cards and attaching magnets to the backs. Then play
the following games with your child.
I Spy-Describe one of the magnets to your child. Have your
child try to guess which one it is. Give as many clues as needed.
Then let your child describe a magnet for you to guess.
Patterning-Help your child arrange the magnets in a pattern.
For example, you could try a pattern of big-small-big-small or red-blue-red-blue.
Which One Doesn't Belong-Select four magnets, three of which have
something in common and one of which is completely different. For
example, you might choose three food magnets and a dog magnet. Ask
your child to tell you which magnet doesn't belong.