Magnets are always fun.
This is one of those projects that the children can participate in making and then playing. It is also sneakily educational.
I began by cutting fish shapes out of white construction paper.*
Then I had my 3yr old daughter punch a hole on the head of each fish.
I attached a paperclip through each hole.
My 9 yr old son numbered the fish 1 through 10. Then my 6 and 7 yr old sons colored the appropriate number of dots on each fish.**
For the fishing poles I found some scrap trim wood aroung the house. If you are not living in a construction zone you can use any kind of sturdy stick… a long wooden spoon, a branch from outside, anything 12-18 inches long and sturdy.
We have magnets will holes in them which made tying them to yarn very easy. Then I taped the other side of the yarn to the stick using painters tape. Think about the things you have around the house. Don’t have those kind of magents? What do you have on your refrigerator that you can use? punch a hole in one of those magnetic business cards and tie one of them on.
My 2 yr old enjoyed just “catching” as many fish as he could. This is a great way to help with the developmennt of eye hand co-ordination.
For my 3yr old I called out numbers and she tried to catch the right number.
My other children, ages 6, 7 and 9 I gave a math fact and they had to “catch” the answer.
My almost 11 and 12 yr olds were not interested in participating. Perhaps if I allowed them to whip each other with the fishing poles and tackle each other while trying to “catch” the numbers they would be interested. But I wouldn’t let them. I know, I am mean like that.
They played with this for almost two hours. As I type this they have gathered a bunch of objects and are trying to determine what is and isn’t magnetic. I did give them a stern warning about keeping the magnetic fishing poles away from televisions and computers. Don’t want to go there again.
*I am going to redo the fish using different color craft foam. It would be more durable and have the added benefit of being able to help my youngest learn his colors.
** I will also do the dots myself the next time as they were more interested in making the dots form shapes than having them be able to be easily counted by my 3 yr old.