Which magnetic building block sets are best?
Magnetic building block sets accomplish something that very few toys marketed as educational can actually accomplish: they’re as much fun as they are excellent for learning. They can rival Lego in their ability to serve as creative material, and thanks to using magnets instead of connectable blocks like Lego they’re far easier to disassemble and reassemble into something new.
The best magnetic building block set is easily the Magna-Tiles 100-Piece Clear Colors Set. This is one of the first magnetic building block sets that hit the market, over 20 years ago. They have stayed around thanks to their top-notch construction and ease of use, plus their high durability in the face of even the most aggressive kids.
What to know before you buy a magnetic building block set
Appropriate age range
Magnetic building block sets come in many options and the intended age range is one method of filtering out what’s best for you. Younger-oriented sets tend to have larger pieces, for example, while older-oriented sets have special, intricate pieces.
The durability of a magnetic building block set isn’t just for longevity, it’s for safety. A magnetic building block set with easily broken pieces can lead to all kinds of dangers from being cut on the jagged edges or swallowing magnets, which can lead to internal damage.
Number of pieces
Another easy method of filtering out some options is the number of pieces included. A solid rule of thumb for this area is that the older your child, the more pieces they’ll likely need to achieve their imaginative aspirations.
What to look for in a quality magnetic building block set
Some children either need a little help to get started or simply prefer to have instructions to follow. Certain magnetic building block sets are designed like a Lego set, with all the pieces and parts you need to build a specific construct and the appropriate building guide.
Most magnetic building block sets don’t come with their own box for storage when not in use. Without a good container, it’s very easy for the pieces to disappear. Investing in something as simple as a large plastic box with a snapping lid can save you lots of grief.
Depending on your child, you might need a set with stronger magnetism than certain sets provide, especially if you have an older, more driven child. Stronger magnets mean a better chance of building up more elaborate visions.
How much you can expect to spend on a magnetic building block set
Due to the massive number of magnetic building block brands and different sets within those brands, trying to pinpoint a price range is difficult. Generally speaking, smaller magnetic building block sets tend to run between $10-$50, with larger sets hitting $80 and the most extensive sets reaching $120-$150.
Magnetic building block set FAQ
How safe are magnetic building block sets?
Magnetic building block sets are one of the safer toys on the market, with only two areas of weakness — but they’re important ones. If a magnetic building block ever cracks or is damaged, whether due to shoddy construction or an aggressively playful child, you must immediately throw it away to avoid risk of injury. The magnets in particular are dangerous when swallowed, because if two magnets or a magnet and something that attracts a magnet are swallowed together they can cause serious internal damage.
If you know or suspect that a child has swallowed a magnet, cease giving them anything else ingestible and call Poison Control at 1-800-222-1222.
Are magnet pieces from different sets compatible?
That’s a question with as many different answers as there are sets, so you’ll have to settle for “maybe.” That’s because different magnets have different strengths and different pieces are constructed in certain ways to improve the connection between pieces of the same brand. It’s always better to add pieces to your collection from the same brand.
What’s the best magnetic building block set to buy?
Top magnetic building block set
What you need to know: The first and foremost magnetic building block set, built to not only last but to take some hard hits, too.
What you’ll love: Colorful, translucent magnetic blocks in all manner of sizes and shapes make bringing a vision to life easy.
What you should consider: Other magnetic building block sets might have a little stronger magnetism and the cost of this set is fairly high.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top magnetic building block set for the money
What you need to know: An excellent small and budget-friendly option for parents with kids they aren’t certain will enjoy a magnetic building block set.
What you’ll love: The 14 blocks are split among five shapes in six colors. For maximum safety, they contain no lead or plastic.
What you should consider: The blocks have a limited range of possible connections and the set has a higher cost than similar magnetic building block sets.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: A top option thanks to the wealth of different shapes and sizes that very few other magnetic building block sets include.
What you’ll love: The magnets are strong and some of the more unusual shapes are domes and wheel bases.
What you should consider: The 100-piece number isn’t entirely magnetic building blocks; roughly a dozen are plastic figurines.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Jordan C. Woika writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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