I purchased a set of Magna-Tiles a few years ago for my oldest, who was 5 years old at the time. She was fascinated with them and worked to replicate some of the patterns in the included booklet along with making her own creative structures. She loved them.
Magna-Tiles are plastic squares, isosceles triangles, equilateral triangles and right triangles measuring about 3 inches in length and about half an inch thick. The edges are lined on the inside with magnets that stick together to make two and three-dimensional objects. You can also pick from solid or clear colored tiles. A small set comes with 32 pieces and a large set comes with 110 pieces. This may sound like a lot, but as my youngest got older and more interested in playing and building with the tiles, 32 pieces was not enough so I added another set one Christmas. That set was still not enough and we just added a third set to our collection. The clear tiles are our favorite over the solid ones.
Magna-Tiles are pricey, retailing at around $50 for a 32-piece set, but worth every penny. This is hands-down, by far, the most played-with toy in our house. My children are learning about shapes, geometry, magnets and architecture, and they don't even realize it. They make the most creative structures, then tear them down and use their creativity for another build.
The one small downside to Magna-Tiles is that they do not have incredibly strong magnets inside. Structures, especially larger ones, are fragile and frustrations can run high because they are not strong to withstand the powers of a preschooler. The tiles themselves are very strong, and even though ours hit the floors a lot with a crash, none of them have ever broken or chipped.
These tiles are a favorite in our household. The educational possibilities are endless!
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