Looking for new Magna Tiles designs to build? Here are our favourite Magna Tiles ideas to make, with printable cards for inspiration.
No matter how exciting and desirable initially, even the best toys tend to fall out of favour. Take LEGO, for example! A great toy, creative and full of possibilities. My son will often play with it for hours at a time. But then, there will also be days and weeks when he will studiously ignore the brick bins.
What to do about that?
In many cases, interest comes back after a break. But other times, you can give children a challenge that will give them a new way to look at an old toy. At one point, I made a pack of Lego building challenges for my children.
But what about Magna Tiles ideas?
They have also been a firm favourite ever since we bought the first box for our son’s second birthday. Back then, one of the Magnetic tile sets came with a booklet which featured a couple dozen designs. My son enjoyed making magnetic creations from scratch, but he also liked looking at the booklet and trying those designs. He treated them as tangram puzzles and delighted at figuring them out.
That booklet is now long gone, but we created many more Magna Tile challenges of our own. Now, my son and I would like to share some of our favourite Magna Tiles designs in hopes of inspiring other children with them!
2D Magna Tiles Ideas
All the great potential for building three-dimensional constructions quickly whisks your attention away from the potential for two-dimensional building with magnetic tiles. And that’s just too bad, for it is worth exploring!
But we have also built a lot of other, more artistic designs, like in our Magna Tile 2D design pack!
When children look at cards, arrange magnetic tiles and try to recreate the designs, they solve puzzles involving matching, counting, patterning, and general critical thinking skills.
The pack of 2D creative designs also introduces children to the combinations created by different shapes. Later, this will help them with three-dimensional constructions as well.
The pack includes designs for a heart, a Ferris wheel, a butterfly, a rocket, a hot air balloon, a mandala, and many more! The cards come in two scales – one design per sheet, as shown below, and four designs per sheet, as shown above.
By the way, did you know that working on vertical surfaces is beneficial for children’s development? Children can build two-dimensional designs with Magna Tiles on fridges, doors, and whiteboards!
You can try a free sample of the designs here or…
3D Magna Tiles Designs
Of course, three-dimensional designs are where magnetic building tiles shine! After all, you can build some very intricate architectural structures and even incorporate other toys into the structures.
For my son, the combination of Magna Tiles and cars was always among his favourites. He liked building garages, bridges, and overpasses.
My daughter, on the other hand, tended to include little animals and dolls into her games, so it’s mostly houses, castles, and barns.
Did you know that you can build furniture for dolls from Magna Tiles as well?
This is just an example of a bed, but when children look at it, they start generating more ideas, “Could I also build a chair? A table? Maybe, a bunk bed? Can I build a whole room for my doll?”
And this was the premise behind creating the pack of printable 3D designs for building from Magna Tiles. It is not just a collection of 3D puzzles to make (though there are plenty of those) but also a collection of designs for using Magna Tiles to generate play ideas.
Besides all the creative ideas, the pack includes a selection of common 3D geometrical forms children can build with magnetic tiles. It teaches children their proper geometric names and also introduces the idea of how they can be built. After all, once you can create a cube from Magna Tiles, you can easily make a box from paper or wood.
You can also laminate the cards for more extended use!
You can try a free sample of the designs here or…
Themed Magna Tiles Ideas
Based on the topic of study or the time of the year, it can be fun to set up a themed building station. With that in mind, we created seasonal magna tiles idea packs.
In the autumn pack, there are designs dedicated to fall themes and various holidays that happen during autumn, such as Thanksgiving (turkey), Moon festival (moon), Halloween (ghost, Jack-o’-lantern, haunted house), Día de Muertos (skull, bones), back-to-school celebration (schoolhouse), various harvest festivals (corn, apple, tractor), and general nature theme (mushrooms, leaves, acorn).
In the winter pack, we have got designs that celebrate Christmas (advent calendar, poinsettia, Santa’s hat, elf, stocking), New Year (clock tower), Hannukah (star), Valentine’s Day (heart), winter activities (ice skates, snowman, snowflake).
We also have a pack of 40 Magna Tile animal designs for an animal lover. They will work well as a part of a bigger animal unit study. There is a penguin, a koala, an ostrich, a peacock, a turkey, an octopus, a scorpion, a shrimp, a salamander, a toad, and more! One of my favourite designs was actually a housefly.
Printable Magna Tile Stickers
We noticed that some magnetic tile sets come with stickers for creating specific constructions. While we value this toy for its open-ended possibilities, the idea of using stickers for a specific build has its own appeal. The kids can play with them for as long as they want, and the stickers can be easily removed afterward.
The first design we made was Magna-Tile Earth.
Other printable designs came in seasonal packs. In the winter Magnetic Tile idea pack, we included the gingerbread house.
The autumn magna-tiles idea pack came with the haunted house stickers.
You can try some of our stickers – or create your own!
More Magnet Tile Ideas
Mix and Match Creature Puzzles by And Next Comes L
Flower Pressing with Magna-Tiles by Hello, Wonderful
Magna-Tiles Domino by And Next Comes L
Magnetic Tile Marble Run by Building with Brothers
Magnetic Tile Ramps by Happy Toddler Playtime
Magnetic Tile Board Game by Play, Teach, Repeat
Magna-Tiles on the Light Table by Play to Learn Preschool
Other STEM Projects
Build birds from pattern blocks!
Build Lego Duplo animals!