This easy to make magnetic fishing craft game is an entertaining way to practice your skills of focus and patience whilst celebrating good feeling with fun challenges.
We discovered this craft in a book called Paper Fun for Kids by Marion Elliot. It was gifted by a teacher from work who used it with her children when they were small. I adapted how we made the magnetic fishing craft and game so we could use the supplies we had at home. We also added a fun challenge underneath each fish, which made the game even more enjoyable and will give children the chance to practice some well being skills like kindness, gratitude, movement and mindfulness.
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Getting Hooked on Crafting!
What you will need to make the Magnetic Fishing Craft and Game:
- Coloured Card
- Round Sticky Magnets (or any other alternative)
- Paper Straws
- Coloured Pencils
- Bull Dog Clips
- Parent Prep – You will need to cut the fish shapes for smaller children
Let’s get Fishing!
Instructions for making the Magnetic Fishing Craft and Game:
1 – Cut the fish Templates. Cut out a selection of fish shapes from card.
2 – Stick on the Magnets. We used round, self adhesive magnets which also worked for the fish eyes.
3 – Decorate the Fish. Use coloured pencils or whatever supplies you have to decorate the fish. Encourage children to take the lead and decorate their fish however they like.
4 – Make the Fishing Rods. Use a straw, a length of string (shorter string makes it easier to pick up a fish). Then clip a bulldog clip to the end, this will connect to the magnet on the fish.
5 – Add some fun challenges. I wrote some fun challenges on the underside of each fish. I picked activities that promote movement, mindfulness, gratitude, kindness, relaxation and connection. We played a few rounds so changed the challenges up as we went round. See our ideas below, they were a real hit and the whole family had fun, the hopping 4 year old was so cute!
- Do something kind (or funny, silly, helpful, quickly etc)
- Think of one fun thing that’s happened today (or hard, easy etc)
- Give someone a hug (or high five, fist bump, hand shake etc)
- Hop on one leg 10 times (or do a forward roll, run on the spot for 30 seconds etc)
- Take a Pirate Breath (take a hot chocolate, dragon or lion breath). See our printable breathing activities for lots ideas.
6 – Get Fishing. We used a round metal tray as a pond and added some crepe paper waves too.
Let’s Talk Wellbeing Skills!
Playing the magnetic fishing game is a good lesson in both patience and focus, using the rod to hook on the fish can be quite tricky and a little frustrating at times. Get kids to notice their feelings and say them out loud, this can take the edge off. What could they then do to help them to manage their frustrations and focus on the task? Take a breath?.. count to 10?.. What works for you?.. Share your experiences with your children, so they know that they aren’t the only ones who struggle with tricky emotions. Through playing this fishing game your kids are now developing self awareness and self control. When the focus comes, they are in the moment and are learning to direct their attention to the task that needs to be done. This is a very important, mindful, life skill.
The fun challenges that you add to the fish are a great opportunity to try out healthy coping strategies and happiness skills like kindness, gratitude, movement and relaxation. You could reflect on how these skills might be useful to deal with life’s frustrations, like when you are trying something new or feeling overwhelmed. Most of all though the whole activity is a lovely chance to create, connect and calm with our kids.
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I’d love to hear if you try out the activity 🙂 Take Care Emma
If you’d like to practice more well being activities with your children take a peek at our breath work exercises for kids. Teaching breathing exercises to kids can be both fun and calming, giving children a skill that will last a life time.
The 3 Mindful Hand Exercises for Calm Kids are a great way for children to be introduced to mindfulness.
Flower breaths help kids bloom! This beautiful breathing exercise encourages children to learn that just like a flower that they are unique
Rainbow breaths exercise is a playful breathing technique, which includes using the breath, visualisation and mindful movement.