Includes 100 translucent, colorful shapes. Helps develop math, science, spatial, and tactile skills. Riveted together for extra strength and safety. Lightweight. Won't fall like traditional blocks. High-quality. Don't break if they hit hard surfaces. For ages 3 and up.
Pricey. Magnets may not be as strong as other brands.
Built to bolster your child's creativity with cubes, pyramids, prisms, hexagons, and rectangles to mix and match to build what's on their mind. Strong magnets help kids balance. Built to develop STEM skills. Works with Magna-Tiles and similar sets.
Smaller than the average set; best for kids who do want castles, buildings, etc.
Includes small and large squares, windows, triangles, 2 arches, and car bases. Lightweight and easy to use. Durable and holds up against mishandling. Has a stained-glass effect when placed in the light.
Magnets are weaker than other brands.
Offers 5 different shapes in 6 colors. Nontoxic pieces do not contain lead or plastic and feature a water-based lacquer finish. Magnets aren't overly strong, but they allow you to build structures that would be impossible with regular, plastic blocks.
Pricey compared to others on the market, and the way the blocks can connect is limited.
Squares, rectangles, and super rectangles with a set of gears to teach kids about motion, science, and critical thinking. Pieces should work with other brands, shapes, and accessories. Promotes creativity on top of ingenuity.
Includes fewer pieces than many other sets.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) is all the rage right now in education at all levels. Parents want their children to excel in these four basic subjects so they can succeed in a global market. Because of this, educational toys that combine these crucial components have become the preferred type of divertissement. Magnetic building block sets incorporate all of these elements in a fun and creative way.
The best sets include a wide variety of shapes so your child can flex their creative muscles in new and astounding ways. First and foremost, however, you want a set that is non-toxic, has no small parts, and will not break. Choosing a set with enough pieces that your child can play with friends is also highly recommended.
When you first start perusing different magnetic building block sets, you will likely be overwhelmed by the number of features and options that are available. Before getting lost in colors and shapes, however, you need to first consider what is most important to you. Any magnetic building block will teach your child basic STEM skills like geometry and engineering, but their size and durability will vary.
Toys for children must be age-appropriate. Some magnetic building sets are constructed using smaller parts — which may be fine for an older child but could be a choking hazard for younger children. In addition, the smaller pieces can be challenging for younger kids to manipulate.
Especially because there are magnets inside the individual building blocks, you do not want the pieces cracking open and becoming a hazard. Look for durable, well-built sets that will keep your child safe.
It can be hard (or impossible) to tell from a picture, but some magnetic building sets may feature pieces that are considerably smaller than the pieces in other sets. You cannot effectively combine sets from different manufacturers if the pieces are not the same size.
A magnetic building block set with just a handful of pieces will not remain exciting for very long because it offers limited ways of expressing creativity. Additionally, if you select a set with a greater number of pieces, your child is better equipped to play with siblings or friends.
After you have narrowed down the selection of magnetic building block sets to a few options, you can look at the other features that make these kits more appealing to help you make your choice.
The materials used in the manufacturing of the pieces of your magnetic building block set must be safe and nontoxic. Most kits are manufactured using ABS plastic, but there are a few wooden sets available if you prefer more natural materials.
Some magnetic building block sets contain pieces that look like a framework. Others have solid tiles. Building-wise, there is not much difference between the two as the magnets are found in the edges of the pieces. However, having a full panel allows your child to construct items that more closely resemble the real thing as opposed to just the framework.
Many magnetic building block sets only come with a handful of basic shapes, which your child can use to make complex structures. However, if you choose a kit with a wider variety of shapes, your child will have much greater flexibility in building widely creative structures.
Besides basic shapes, some magnetic building block sets include specialty pieces such as arches, wheels, windows, shingles, or even a Ferris wheel. Additionally, you can get a kit that includes tiles with letters and numbers to enhance the spelling and mathematical aspects of your set.
Not only do magnetic building block sets come in a wide variety of colors, some are available in multiple color schemes. For instance, if your child prefers bold colors over pastels, you should choose a set that reflects their tastes.
Whether it's a plastic case or a travel bag, a magnetic building block set that includes a convenient way to store your pieces can make keeping track of pieces and transporting your set much easier.
The strength of the magnets can vary from one set to the other. If your children want to build tall and elaborate structures, you will need a set with extremely strong magnets.
A magnetic building block set that has a booklet that provides instructions for constructing a few initial projects is a great way for your child to be introduced to how these particular building blocks can fit together and give them a few ideas for inspiration.
The price of magnetic building block sets can range from $10 for a low-quality budget set to over $300 for an expansive set.
Inexpensive: In the $10 to $50 range, the magnetic building blocks are mostly frames with a decent variety of shapes, but they are either limited in the number of pieces or the quality of the components.
Mid-range: From $50 to $80, you can find higher quality, more durable building sets that feature a wide variety of options. This is the best price range to consider if you are curious about magnetic building blocks.
Expensive: From $80 to $120 are the highest quality kits for serious builders. Usually, these include about 100 pieces and have extra safety features such as riveted corners. You can pay much more for a magnetic building block set, but if you do, it should include substantially more pieces.
Magnetic building blocks are a fun way to explore creativity. However, they are also educational tools that can help your child develop in a number of ways. Here are just a few of the skills your children can learn with these clever toys:
Q. Are magnetic building block sets safe?
A. Any magnetic building blocks that crack or break must be discarded. If two magnets or a magnet and an object that is attracted to a magnet are swallowed, they can create a blockage or pinch digestive tissue between them, which may cut off blood supply to the stomach or intestines. If you suspect that your child has swallowed a magnet, do not give him or her anything to eat or drink and do not induce vomiting. Instead, call Poison Control (1-800-222-1222) immediately.
Q. How do you clean magnetic building blocks?
A. It’s always best to check the instructions for how to best clean your particular set of magnetic building blocks. In general, however, magnetic building blocks are made with nontoxic plastic, so cleaning usually involves wiping the pieces with a soft damp cloth and a mild soap cleanser, child-safe wipes, or a child-safe spray and a soft cloth.
Q. Are different magnetic building block sets compatible?
A. The answer to that question is a very big maybe. Some sets will work with other sets, but many do not because they provide a flimsy connection at best, which can be frustrating for your child. If a set doesn't offer the variety of shapes and colors you desire, it is usually better to find a set that has everything you want rather than trying to mix and match.