Let’s go fishing! With the help from magnets, we can have a fun fishing adventure at home, and learn something too! This fishing game is great practice for hand eye coordination, and depending on how you choose to set it up, your little one can practice colors, numbers, and letters too! With a few simple steps, you’ll be on your way to a super fun learning activity that can be done with or without water!
A reminder: always make sure children are supervised when playing with small magnets.
To Make The Fish You’ll Need:
- Fun foam
- Paper clips
- Hot glue
- Googly eyes
- Fish template, printed (optional)
To Make The Fishing Rod:
- Wooden dowel 1/4” x 12”
- String or yarn
- Large bead
- Strong magnet, such as an earth magnet
Print out our fish template and cut out the three different fish shapes. Trace the fish templates onto a colored sheet of fun foam and cut out. Make as many as you like for your fish pond! You can also cut out your own fish shapes instead of using the template.
Draw different patterns onto the fish with a marker. If you are planning to use the fish in water, a permanent marker will hold up the best. If you would like to use the fish for practicing letters and numbers, leave some space to draw on different letters and numbers.
Glue the googly eyes into place with hot glue.
Add a paper clip to the mouth of each fish.
The Fishing Rod
Decorate your dowel with paint or tape. We used electrical tape on ours! Attach a piece of string by tying a knot around one end of the dowel and secure into place with hot glue. Feed the other side of the string through a bead. Tie knots at the tip of the string so it fits snugly in the hole without going through and add hot glue inside to lock it into place. Finally, glue your strong magnet to the bottom of the bead.
Place your fish on the ground or in some shallow water – you can use a bathtub, kiddie pool or a large bin. Catch as many fish as you can with your fishing rod!
Learning Through Play
Practice color vocabulary as your little one catches the fish. Ask them what color it is, or ask them to try and catch a specific colored fish. Once all the fish are caught, count how many you have as you throw them back. To practice letters or numbers, add a letter or number to each fish. Have your little one catch the fish in numerical order, or in the order of the alphabet for letters. Or just go fishing and see what numbers and letters you catch. Try putting a letter on each fish that spells out a name or another word. Once all the fish are caught, see encourage your little one to put them in the correct order to spell the word.