How to make your own magnetic fishing toy

Looking for some rainy day craft fun to do with young children? Create your own magnetic fishing set at home with these simple instructions. This craft is fun to make and you end up with a fun toy to play with later.

What you need:

Collect the following supplies to make your fishing set.

  • Paper
  • Crayons or markers
  • Scissors
  • Wooden dowels
  • Small, strong, double-sided magnets
  • String or ribbon
  • Wide, clear tape
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks

Making the fish:

Draw outlines of simple fish on a piece of paper. Do not use cardstock or construction paper as it may be too heavy for the magnets to work properly. Place the second piece of paper under the first, and follow the outlines to cut out the fish from both layers of paper. Keep the fish in matched pairs; decorate the fish with crayons or markers in any way you like. Even young toddlers can easily help with this part.

Once the fish are decorated, place a magnet in between each matched pair of fish cutouts. Place wide strips of clear, packing-style tape over each side of the fish so it sticks to the other side of the tape. The tape should overlap the fish by at least a half of an inch on each side. For larger fish, it may be necessary to use a couple of pieces of tape on each side. In essence, the tape serves to laminate ť the paper fish, making it sturdier and sealing the magnet between the two layers. Trim the tape to no less than a quarter-inch around the fish. It is okay to leave up to half an inch; it will just make the fish more secure.

Making the fishing poles:

Cut a piece of string or ribbon to a length of approximately 2 feet for each fishing pole. An adult should heat up and use the glue gun for this portion. Craft glue can be substituted for this craft but takes much longer to dry and may not adhere as well. Use the hot glue gun to adhere one end of the string to one end of a wooden dowel. At the other end of the string, use the glue gun to attach one of the magnets.

Now, you are ready to go fishing!

Fishing games:

Scatter the fish on the floor; spread them out so they do not stick to one another. For an outdoor party, place the fish in an empty wading pool. Use the magnet on the fishing pole to attract the magnet in a fish to pick it up. Play a competitive game to see who can pick up the most fish in a set time period. For a greater challenge, try playing blindfolded and see how many fish you can catch. To use this as a party game, place a number on each fish, and associate a prize with each number. Allow each child to select one fish and collect the prize assigned to that fish’s number.

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