OBP - September 2022


Forums / Early Childhood / Magnets in Kinder

Early Childhood

Magnets in Kinder

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Brenda Villarreal Brenda Villarreal 974 Points

Hello! I was hoping to get a little help when it comes to creating a lesson about magnets for kinder. Most of the students are tired and are not excited by the end of the day so the first class gets a good experience and the second does not. What can I do to help the second class get excited enough to participate and learn about magnets?

Michelle Biddinger Michelle Biddinger 405 Points

Hey Brenda,

I am currently a preservice teacher, and I am taking a science methods course.  One of the chapters in our course textbook is dedicated to helping educators learn how to teach about magnetism using various fun and engaging activities.  You may want to consider some of these activities to use with your second kindergarten class.  The book is called Science Experiencers for the Early Childhood Years; An Integrated Affective Approach by Mary Rivkin and Jean Harlan. 

One activity idea was to have students go outside with magnets and see what things in the environment are magnetic where one student tests the objects while the other student writes down what they discovered.  Not only does this activity teach about the concept of magnets, but it also helps them foster their collaboration skills as they work in pairs.  Another fun activity that was mentioned in my textbook was for teachers to provide students with different size magnets where they investigate which magnets are the strongest and which magnets are the weakest.  One final activity that I thought was interesting was having students learn that magnets repel each other when one tries to place the same ends together.  In this activity, students take two large magnets and try to put the same ends of the two magnets together (south with south poles) and then their opposite ends (south and north poles).  This is very interesting and engaging for students because they get to physically feel the attraction and the resistance of the magnets.

Hopefully these are some exciting ideas that will keep your students interested in the topic and continue to motivate them to learn.


Dong Ngo Dong Ngo 845 Points

Bring many different sizes of magnets into the classroom. That alone typically creates some curiosity. Kindergarteners should be learning numeracy. You can create a little experiment having the students use a magnet with paper clips and then have them count each paper clip that was magnetized. This could be great for combining math and science together, especially if you have those that needs additional help in math. You can also create a basic anchor chart after the experiment to go over what happened, etc.

Natashia Silva Natashia Silva 445 Points

Hi Brenda!! I totally understand your pain on trying to get little ones interested when they are tired! Currently, I am a student teacher in a first grade classroom and it is very difficult at the end of the day trying to get them to do anything. Recently, my mentor teacher taught magnets. I suggest having the students explore first in centers. We had three centers. One center there was magnetic block tiles where the students could build towers. The other center was sand with metal objects inside and the students had magnets where they could pull the objects out. The last center was a metal objects inside of soda bottle filled with water and the students had magnets where they could move the objects. So, getting the student excited about magnets through exploring first, do not tell them what they are learning yet, let them discover it in hand ons activity. This way to them it is just playtime. I hope this helps!

Brenda Velasco Mizenko Brenda Velasco 2695 Points

I taught kindergarten and magnets were always a lot of fun. We had metal paint cans (non toxic ones) and we would put a magnet in it. Another can would be full of sand, another would have half sand and magnets, one would be empty. We'd predict which can would roll the fastest. Their reaction to the one with the magnet was always entertaining. I would also give them a magnet and go around the room to see what items in the classroom were magnetic. (if you have computers it's important to tell them to keep the magnets away from them) We would have science journals where students would draw their findings and write to their best of their knowledge what they found out about the experiment. It was always a fun unit.

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