For the prospective young engineer or just a game-lover that enjoys puzzles, playing with the Magnetix construction set can be a blast. From simple structures and shapes to larger and more complex designs, Magnetix provides nearly limitless opportunities. The game is so advantageous that occupational therapists have used them as a fine-motor activity during rehabilitation.
The first place to start with Magnetix is a block. For those learning the game, simple blocks allow the opportunity to become familiar with the parts and pieces. If you're a parent or teacher, Magnetix provides a great interactive opportunity for kids to learn shapes. Cubes are especially easy to design as they can easily be created on different scales.
Pyramids and Other Simple Shapes
A simple pyramidal structure can also be built in many different sizes, but the easiest one to build with the Magnetix set only requires eight rods and five balls to build. First, take four rods to form a square using one steel sphere to hold each corner. Next, create an X shape by attaching the remaining bar around the fifth ball. Position this on top of the square, matching the four endpoints of the X structure to each corner of the square. Manipulating the bars upright to form a 45-degree angle forms the roof of the mini pyramid.
The majority of creations with Magnetix will be geometrical patterns or shapes. Start with simple designs; however, once simple designs are mastered, move into slightly more complex ones, such as diamonds, octagons or helices.
Bridges, Tunnels, Skyscrapers
Designing more complicated structures might call for hundreds or even thousands of rods, balls and panels, as well as a basic understanding of geometric principles. With a plan of action and enough pieces, you can design nearly anything, from large chess pieces, to various mini-replica skyscrapers. Buildings offer a particular advantage as they come in a large variety. Bridges and tunnels can make great accessories to children's other toys -- especially as the design can be customised.
Magnetix construction sets are comprised of steel bearing balls and plastic bars that are embedded with magnets. These building pieces come in a variety of materials. Mega Brands has put out metallic, primary colour, pastel and translucent sets. Its 60-piece Extreme Combo includes an assembly of square and triangle panels, presenting a whole new range of construction possibilities. Each box comes with a booklet of ideas, although larger formations usually require several sets of the game to complete.