Having an 8 year old son who loves building things I just knew he’d enjoy getting creative with GEOMAG and their range of magnetic construction sets. We’ve recently been sent two different types of GEOMAG sets to try out, offering different challenges and they’ve both been a big hit here.
Both sets are aimed at children aged 5 years and over.
The GEOMAG Mechanics 86 piece set comes with a range of components to construct three different moveable models – 24 non-magnetic metal spheres, 17 metal blue magnetic rods, 1 indicator rod, 1 square panel, 2 tubes, 13 washers, 12 feet for washers, 12 linear bars, 1 square for bearing, 1 cage for bearing, 1 plate and 1 cone as well as clear instructions.
My son couldn’t wait to get started and was soon getting creative with GEOMAG as he tried to put together one of the models.
The plastic components cleverly slot into each other to create the various structures and my son had soon worked out how her needed to put them together.
Gone are the days when my help is needed with anything new that arrives for us to try. I’m just there to offer guidance and advice from afar.
As my son constructed one of the models he soon realised that he really needed to think about weight and balance as he progressed with the build. He also learnt about magnetic forces as he soon realized that the indicator rod (with the red band) could be used to make the magnetic rods move backwards and forwards by identifying the magnetic north and south poles of the rods.
He loved the idea that the steel spheres could be held in place purely by magnetic forces. A little bit of magic whilst learning a bit about science.
My son absolutely loves this set, and the whole idea of creating motion.
He’d soon set aside the instructions and set to work on his own creations. The possibilities with this set are endless and I can see it being used a lot in the years to come.
From a storage point of view I would like to see this set come in an easily resealable main storage box as well as including resealable plastic storage bags for the various components inside. It’s my only criticism of this particular set from a parent’s point of view.
Getting creative with GEOMAG and the 192 piece GEOMAG Panels set offers different build potential, focussing more on structures and shapes than motion. The set comes with 65 green rods, 50 non-magnetic steel spheres, 2 blue platforms and 1 green pentagonal platform as well as 74 blue, light blue and green plastic panels in triangles, squares and pentagons.
With this set the outer box is sealable and plastic storage bag is also resealable. The majority of the rods and steel spheres are stored in three polystyrene boxes. The lids of these boxes are a little tight and my son needed me to open them, and I couldn’t do it without breaking bits of each lid off in the process. But the lids do still fit back on, keeping everything secure once construction time is over.
I can see this set going down really well in the classroom at school, as children are able to make 2D models of shapes ranging from triangles and pentagons, right through to 3D models of octahedrons and dodecahedrons. This is a set that will really come into play with my son as he moves through Key Stage Two I think.
You can make shapes with or without using the shaped panels. There is a certain amount of patience required with these builds to ensure the shapes stay in place.
My son has certainly found this set slightly more challenging but he has enjoyed playing with the polarities and trying to put together shapes he’s been learning about at school. The plates are good for holding shapes together so you can move them more easily.
You can also use the snap in panels to help with construction.
There is a bit of a knack to getting these in place, and the various shapes will work on manual dexterity, but you can make some great structures using them.
My son definitely needed a bit more help with the larger shape constructions but he loved the finished pieces. The GEOMAG Panels set is very clever and as I’ve said, before, I can really see this set coming in to play as my son moves up into higher KS2.
Getting creative with GEOMAG has endless possibilities and these sets will be used over and over again I’m sure in the next few years. The sets certainly tick all the boxes with regards to STEM learning and I’m going to be talking to my son’s teacher to see if she’d like to borrow the GEOMAG Panels set for the Year 3/4 class to try out after the holidays.
The GEOMAG range is available in Smyths and The Entertainer and I’ve also included my Amazon Affiliate links below for your reference. To view the whole range then I can recommend looking at the GEOMAG website and their Youtube channel.
disclosure: we received the items mentioned in exchange for an honest review
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