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Date: 27 October 2017

Child’s play: 10 ways a Magnetic Wall can develop your child’s learning

We share our top tips for making the most out of a Magnetic Wall in your home.

There’s nothing worse – or more frustrating - than hearing that familiar cry of, ‘Mum, I’m bored!’ A Magnetic Wall is not only fun and engaging for little ones, but also encourages learning through play, helping develop personal, emotional and physical skills, and boosting their communication and language, mathematics and literacy. And best of all for time-pressed parents, it couldn’t be simpler to create.

By applying Thistle Magnetic Plaster, you can transform any wall in your home into a Magnetic Learning Wall. The plaster can be easily installed over a new wall surface, or retrofitted over an existing wall as part of a room makeover. You can change what’s on it as often as you like, without the need for nails, staples or glue. 

Boy using Magnetic Wall as noticeboard

Here’s our top 10 tips on how installing Thistle Magnetic Plaster and transforming your existing wall into a Magnetic Wall can help your children with their learning.

1. Keep little fingers entertained with a ‘busy board’

A homemade sensory ‘busy board’ means hours of entertainment for them…and hours of calm for you. Even better, they’re easy for you to make with random household objects you probably already have around your home. Choose objects with bright colours, interesting textures and the like. Simply attach magnets to the back of them and you’re good to go.

A busy board that can keep your child entertained

2. Map out people and places

Thistle Magnetic Plaster can be painted with whiteboard paint, so hunt down some whiteboard markers and picture magnets with vehicles, buildings, people and animals on them - or make your own using stickers on a backing with a magnet attached - then draw a map with a farm, a zoo, a hospital and ask your children to move the correct object or person to the place on the map.

3. Help them learn their colours 

Toddlers love bright colours, so why not make a sorting board dedicated to mastering them? Find random objects that you can attach magnets to and make them function as sorting objects. Try taking every magnet off the wall, mixing them up and then work on placing them all back on their respective board, first together, then independently.

4. Encourage 3D thinking

With Magformers magnetic building sets on a mega magnet board your child can have so much fun creating 3D constructions and patterns. They help develop comprehensive 3D thinking that uses various abilities of the brain, developing reasoning, sensory development, curiosity, creativity, imagination, mathematical and scientific thinking.

5. Pattern development

Go online and print a sheet of triangles and a sheet of squares and rectangles in bright colours onto printable magnet sheets and use them to make patterns. For a cheaper option, print them onto photo paper, cut them out and glue old fridge magnets to the back.

6. Create their own picture art

Jigsaws are an important educational learning tool for toddlers and young children as they offer many learning benefits and opportunities, such as problem solving, cognitive Skills, fine Motor Development and Hand and Eye Co-ordination. Attaching magnetics to the back of the pieces means children can see the picture evolving in front of them and prevents the dog walking across their finished artwork!

7. Making their own toys with marbles

A marble run will not only improve your child’s cognitive and motor skills, but build their self-esteem through the accomplishment of playing with a toy they’ve made themselves. Use pieces of clear vinyl tubing, PVC pipe and elbows and T-joints, and get out the craft sticks and glue to build track pieces. As many children are visual learners, try giving your child pictures of run designs that they could try and replicate themselves. This will teach them how to gather, store, and retrieve the information that they need for specific tasks. Kids aged 6-8 have a greater memory capability because many routines (such as tying shoes, brushing teeth, and bathing) are automatic now. So give them some ideas to get them started and then watch them go!

8. The writing’s on the wall 

A word wall is a great interactive way to help kids with their writing and reading. Add new words gradually and use daily, practising words through a variety of activities such as chanting, clapping, and word guessing games to keep things fun. Try word building with alphabet magnets, too. Thistle Magnetic Plaster can be painted with whiteboard paint, so let your children write their own words and sentences on the walls, knowing you’ll be able to wipe clean afterwards. 

Girl plays with an interactive word Magnetic Wall

9. Help them find their place in their world

Keep pictures of friends and family on a Magnetic Wall in your child's room to develop word association and improve memory. Write people's names on sticky notes (include titles such as "aunt," "uncle," and "cousin") and put them at the bottom of each photo. As your child grows, extend the activity by creating a family tree with names and pictures that your child has drawn themselves so it becomes an ever-changing piece of personal artwork they can be proud of.

10. Number blocks build understanding of maths

Having the pieces stay in place by magnets is perfect for picture building with number blocks. Use a permanent (or wet erase) marker to write 1-10 on a ten block so kids can see that each cube within the 10 is a 1. You can do so many different counting, adding, subtracting, etc. activities with cubes on the Magnetic Wall and it really helps your children to see numbers conceptually and follow your “thinking” as you move the cubes, which is amazing for building their number sense. 

If you’re looking for a local plasterer you transform your existing wall into a Magnetic Wall click here.