Take Possum (2.5 years) to someones house and if there are magnets on a fridge she is there like lightening. She loves them so much, as I’m sure many toddlers of her age do. Given this, I thought that I should try and make some for her to play with at home.
This puzzle above is one I used to play with when I was little. My amazing mum has kept lots of toys and things so that I could pass them down to my own little ones when that time came. Unfortunately this particular puzzle hadn’t really survived the years and was missing a piece, which I can’t be sure was supposed to be fixed or not. Rather than throwing it out, which seemed like a huge shame, I decided to turn the puzzle pieces into magnets for play.
DIY magnets using puzzle pieces
You will need-
- Puzzle pieces
- Self Adhesive fridge magnets ($2.80)
Simply remove the backing paper from the fridge magnet and carefully place it on the underside of the puzzle piece. You may need to cut the magnet to fit each piece but that’s it!
N.B It’s a good idea to ensure the magnet on the puzzle piece remains balanced. If you place the magnet too far to the right or left, it might not stay upright with the added weight.
Possum had a wonderful time playing with all the magnetised puzzle pieces and began telling a story about each of the animals. This was fabulous for her language development and creative story telling skills.
Simple games for learning
There were a few games that we found yourselves playing with these puzzle pieces. Asking Possum to point to the various pieces helped her gain a better understanding about the names of animals and their characteristics. Simply asking her to point to a cow or something that was black and white gave her an opportunity to really look at each of the pieces and learn from them.
Ordering, sorting and grouping/categorising
It became a natural progression for Possum to start moving the pieces around and begin grouping them. Firstly it was according to size and then by some of the colours they had. Some children will able to do this easily and some might take longer to grasp this concept.
I thought it would be a bit of fun to play a simple memory game. I picked out some of the puzzle pieces and we talked about each of them. I then asked Possum to close her eyes while I took one piece away. It did take some time for her to understand the concept but before long she was able to do it easily. At this point I thought I’d test her by taking away two of the objects. She thought this was such a fun game and played it with Daddy as soon as he got home. LOL
I’m so pleased that I was able to give my old puzzle new life by turning them into fun magnets. I know they will be treasured for a long time to come, which is really wonderful. Make it Kid Friendly also did this with some old magnetic puzzle pieces and Kate from Picklebums created a wonderful round up of other activities using magnets, which might interest you.