The weekend we built a water table for Sophie’s gazebo. The gazebo already had a water wall which we made by attaching pipes and bottles to some trellis using cable ties. However, I wanted to make make it more interactive by creating something she could position herself so I decided to make a magnetic water wall.
- Magnetic board £10 – IKEA
- 2m length of guttering £3.97 – B&Q
- Downpipe clips to hold the funnels £1 each – B&Q
- Magnets – I already had some magnets in my craft stuff which I bought from eBay ages ago. If your child is likely to put things in there mouth it might be worth buying magnetic tape instead as it can be dangerous if children swallow magnets.
- Glue – I bought this type of glue from B&Q because it said it was suitable for plastic and metal, it could be used when wet and it is moisture resistant.
We sawed the guttering into a variety of lengths and attached the magnets to the edges. I used quite a few magnets to make sure the guttering stayed on the board once the water was poured onto it.
I attached some magnets to the downpipe clips so that Sophie could use them to hold the funnels in place. I attached a few so that they didn’t slide down the magnetic board when the funnel were placed into them.
We built Sophie a water table on the same day and I was really excited to let her have a go with magnetic wall. Unfortunately, I only gave the magnets a couple of hours to dry before using the pieces and lots of them fell off. I glued the magnets back on and left them to dry for 24 hours and they seem to be stuck quite firmly now.
I bought a flexi tub from Homebase to keep all of the pieces in when they are not being used.
It took Sophie a few turns to work out how to use the water wall successfully. She found it tricky to get the guttering to stick at first but she soon got the hang of it.
She also had to learn to be careful when tipping the water in because if she leaned on the guttering then all the pieces fell off!
We positioned a bucket at the bottom to try to catch the water but Sophie enjoyed splashing in the puddles even more than catching the water!
I am also planning to add some different shaped pieces to send the water in different directions. I am also going to try drilling some holes along the bottom of one of the pieces of guttering so that the water can drip through them.
She tried to roll her cars down the guttering as well, but the magnets aren’t strong enough to take the weight and all the pieces fell off. I have saved her old guttering so that she can set up some car ramps elsewhere. The magnetic pieces are strong enough for her to roll plastic ball pool balls down though, which she enjoyed doing.
Magnets can be dangerous if swallowed. If you make a magnetic board, make sure to supervise your children while they use it.
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