For the Love of Magnet Tiles- By Emily C.

We love magnet tiles.

This has to be one of our household’s favorite play items for so many reasons.  The tiles are colorful, fun to sort and stack by color or shape, and amazing for building all sorts of great structures.  They combine math and engineering skills through construction, as well as opportunities for imaginative play.  I even enjoy playing with this toy when I’m allowed.

There are many places to read reviews about which brand of tiles to get.  I have found that some are more magnetic and stable than others, but it will be personal preference which you choose.  When your child bumps into a structure, it will likely require some reconstruction, but that’s all part of the fun!

Some of the brands include the following:  Magna-Tiles®, Picasso Tiles, and Magformers, to name a few.  We opted for one of the solid sets because we thought they were a bit more versatile and would provide more floor surfaces than the sets with holes in each piece.

I will warn you now that they are expensive, but they are so worth it.  The only problem is you need more tiles than you realize.  My daughter says, “Sometimes I build very big castles, and if I want to build another castle that is very big, then I need more magnet tiles.”

We started our 4-year-old daughter with a 32-piece set to see if she liked it.   She was immediately hooked (so were we).  She made small towers, castles, and walkways.  Her imagination was limited quickly by the small collection of tiles at her disposal.  Thanks to grandma, she welcomed a new set of 100 for Christmas.

Our princess and Frozen lover now had enough tiles to make Anna and Elsa’s ice castle simultaneously and to reenact the movie with her dolls in the two different structures.  But then she needed more.  I think that grandma heard her plea and will be sending another 100 for Valentine’s Day.

Instantly, the buildings became more advanced with intricate towers, turrets, and features.  Her castles had “elevators,” ice rinks, and a variety of other fun features.  I am impressed by how many of her structures look like famous British landmarks.  Her latest pirate passion has yielded some very clever ships and shapes with new angles.

We found another brand online that had pieces that resembled windows and doors.  Most of the sets are compatible with each other, fortunately, so we ordered a small set to complement her existing pieces (up to around 160 now).  They have been a little fun to use but proved that we were right to get mostly solid pieces as our daughter likes to create floors for her dolls to stand and dance on.  The dolls fall through these pieces when they are used as floors.

If you’re looking for more fun ways to use magnet tiles, check out the Artful Parent for some ideas in the sand, under water, and on fridge.

When I ask my daughter what she loves about her tiles, she says, “They’re really fun.”