Magnetic Mazes

Magnetic Mazes lesson plan

Observe the pulling power of magnets by making your own amazing maze! Use magnets to guide figures around turns, into dead ends, and to the finish.

  • 1.

    Working in small groups, invite students to explore how magnets work. Provide classroom resources on the subject, as well as access to suggested Internet web sites on the topic. Challenge students to make predictions and test which objects and materials are attracted to magnets. Observe how magnets attract and repel. Have students record their findings on a chart with Crayola® Washable Markers.

  • 2.

    Challenge student knowledge of magnets and put it to work! Have students draw mazes on recycled file folders or poster board. Mazes could relate to a theme, favorite book, or holiday. For example, a maze could be created focused on bats finding their way through a cave. If classmates are good at these puzzles, make them more challenging! After mazes are finished, students try to solve each other's mazes.

  • 3.

    To make the playing figures (such as bats) that will find their way through the maze, students fold construction paper in half. Use Crayola Scissors to cut small figures along the fold. Make tabs at their bases so they can stand up. Fold tabs.

  • 4.

    Color figures with markers. Attach a paper clip on the bottom of each one with Crayola School Glue. Dry.

  • 5.

    To solve mazes, students set one figure at the start. Use a guiding magnet to pull the figure along the maze from start to finish.

Standards

  • LA: Describe the relationship between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text, using language that pertains to time, sequence, and cause/effect.
  • LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 3 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.
  • LA: Ask and answer questions about information from a speaker, offering appropriate elaboration and detail.
  • LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.
  • MATH: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
  • MATH: Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
  • SCI: Investigate the forces between two or more magnets to identify patterns.
  • VA: Intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.
  • VA: Select and use the qualities of structures and functions of art to improve communication of ideas.

Adaptations

  • Encourage students to embellish mazes by adding walls, folded-paper objects such as trees, lampposts, etc.
  • Students use Crayola Model Magic to create 3-D figures to move about the maze.
  • Students make predictions about how long it will take for a classmate to solve a maze. Challenge a competitor to complete the maze in a lesser time. Use a timer to keep track of time used.
  • Student groups create a floor-size maze using roll paper. Students become the figures to move about the maze. If the weather is cooperative, take the maze outside to solve!