Connetix are a marvellous way to engage your child with puzzle-solving and get them to develop cognitive and creative skills. Since children learn best through play, Connetix are a wonderful resource. Here are some of the ways you can use Connetix to create puzzle games for an educational fun time.
Mazes are a time-proven way for your child to learn problem-solving skills. Either with siblings or in a classroom setting, this is a good team exercise to practice working together!
Using a Connetix base plate, or a baking tray if you haven’t got a base plate in your set yet, create a colourful maze with your child. You can walk your fingers through it as finger-people, use small dolls, or even a toy car to make its way through. You can also tilt the tray to make a ball roll through. Make sure to add some dead ends to your maze! You can shift the walls around again and again, making it more difficult for hours of amusement.
Kids love knocking things down. Having to build a dominoes trail takes time, which builds patience and teaches planning skills. Smaller children will be amazed at the chain reaction after gently knocking only the first tile down!
Challenge your child to use the colours of the rainbow in ROYGBIV order, or to make a triangle or square to knock down. Fill the room with a domino trail!
Create your own DIY puzzles by using removable stickers and positioning them over the join of two (or more) Connetix, then carefully cutting along the join to create puzzle pieces!
It’s hard for us to think of a mathematical concept you couldn’t teach using Connetix. They are super perfect for creating simple mathematical puzzles to solve! Factoring? Sure: simply write a number on a big tile and other numbers on smaller tiles, showing the child how to pull the right tiles into a factor tree.
Addition, subtraction, multiplication, division are all done by using the tiles as objects to place and take away. But by writing numbers on the tiles with dry-erase markers, you can even tackle early algebra in a way that will help more visual learners!
Sudoku is a classic numbers-based puzzle to challenge your brain and build concentration and mathematics skills. Children love an opportunity to share a common interest with grownups. Simultaneously, they will improve their decision-making abilities, logical reasoning, and spatial awareness.
Use a dry-erase or chalk marker to write the numbers directly onto the tiles. You can also use number stickers, but the marker is even easier to remove than prying off stickers. Using Connetix is much more fun than just a pencil and paper! (Just remember to test spot markers first and remove after play).
Eye-pleasing patterns are easy to make when you have shapes and colours like Connetix has on offer! Try challenging your child or your class to create a flower, a square, or letters and numbers. Connetix even offers free printable resources so kids can independently work on the challenges too.
What better way to learn geometry than with our Connetix Geometry pack! Kids can create snowflakes, people, and animals out of all sorts of shapes, learning the names as they go. Using whiteboards or refrigerators you can create DIY puzzles by tracing the outline of shapes and/or getting children to sort and match their Connetix by shapes and colours.
What about 3D shapes? These versatile tiles can make anything from pyramids and prisms to a standing robot or even a wall.
Symmetry puzzles are a great way to encourage recognition of colours and patterns, and is fundamental to developing geometry skills. On a flat surface, create half an image for children to finish off by mirroring what was created. For example,
By setting up symmetry puzzles children will be able to explore organisational skills, and learn how shapes work together as they rotate and tessellate their Connetix to create a mirror reflection of the pattern first created.
Literacy and Word Games
Connetix tiles can be used in a myriad of ways for literacy gains. Kids love this so much more than boring worksheets.
Synonym and Antonym Recognition
Write synonyms and antonyms on Connetix tiles, and have the children attach them together according to your instructions. Opposites, or alike?
Children can create stories with a magnetic board and tiles with words. Or try Mad Libs: write a story on the board, leaving blank spaces for children to add in a noun or verb from the word pile!
Write words in Spanish (or whatever second language your children are working on) and the English translations on tiles. Have the children match them up! (Did you know Connetix offer free printable resources in different languages?)
This is a great way to teach hands-on literacy. As in the Sudoku tip, use dry-erase/chalk markers to write the separate parts of compound words onto the Connetix. Try words like play, ground, moon, light, sea, shell, bee, and hive.
This will also be an invitation to giggle as kids try putting moon and bee together, and other fun combinations! Talk about it: why aren’t there such things as a moonbee, a lightbean, or a hiveshell? What would those things look and act like?
Connetix magnetic tiles are a wonderful resource to encourage learning through PLAY! As a magnetic resource, Connetix are the perfect option to explore puzzle play while simultaneously developing cognitive and fine motor skills. Have you tried any of these Connetix activities yet?
As Steve Jobs said, “creativity is just connecting things.” Give your child the tools they need to let their creativity flow! The reviews are in, and Connetix lives up to the hype again and again. But don’t take our word for it—try them out for yourself, and begin learning through play.