AD: We were sent the Geomag Supercolor 42 piece set for the purposes of this review. Please see full disclaimer at the end of this post.
Since starting school nearly three weeks ago we can amazingly see the effects of new connections forming in my daughter’s brain. After a summer full of fun days out she seems to have come back to learning so ready and eager and the jumps that she’s already making in phonics is a wonder to behold. Those new brain connections aren’t only in the classroom though. The way she plays seems to have changed. She’s questioning things differently, and also less of her play is now around role play, but instead around trying things out and understanding how things work. Being asked to review the Geomag Supercolor set couldn’t therefore have come at a better time. We were sent the 42 piece set for the purposes of this review.
Existing Geomag Knowledge
Geomag isn’t a new brand to us here. About five years ago my older two reviewed the Geomag panels and mechanics sets and my son still pulls them out of his bedroom cupboard to play with them. Bearing in mind he turns 11 this week I think that gives you an idea of the long term appeal of these magnetic constructions toys, and backs up the age range of 3 to 99 that appears on the box.
Geomag Supercolour – what’s in the box?
What’s actually inside the Geomag Supercolor box is relatively straightforward, but also very neatly packaged. In total you receive 20 of the Geomag magnetic rods or bars. These are in four different colours and the box contains 6 of the blue and green ones and four each of the red and orange ones.
In addition there are 20 ball bearings that are used to join the rods together. There are also two plastic base plates – one square and one pentagonal in shape. There is also a handy instruction leaflet that doesn’t contain many words, but those that there are are in English. Also in the instructions are some QR codes which point towards the Geomag website where there are handy videos to help with some of the model builds.
One of the neatest things about this set is the cute little storage boxes that the magnets and ball bearings are in. These sturdy little boxes mean that you can easily make sure you’re not missing anything when you tidy up. One contains 8 balls and the red and orange rods, which the other has the green and blue rods in it, along with 12 balls.
Getting to grips with the base plates
When we first started playing with the bases I have to say that I wasn’t too impressed by them. I could see the logic but the magnets are so strong that nothing would stay put. It wasn’t until my husband pointed out that I’d missed something that I realised that I’d actually been using them wrong! What you have to do is not just place the balls in the corners, but actually push them down and click them into place. If they’re in right you should be able to pick the board up and turn it upside down without the balls falling out. Suddenly it all made so much sense!
To remove the balls from the bases, you simply turn them over and push them out from the underside.
It’s one of those things that seems so obvious when you know how to use them, but I’m pretty sure (or just hoping to save embarrassment!) that I’m not the only one to realise, so it seemed worth pointing it out.
Geomag as an educational STEM toy
This Geomag Supercolor set is perfect as a STEM toy to encourage discovery. Each magnet is incredibly strong, making them excellent to demonstrate polarity with. It really didn’t take long for our four year old to realise that if she tried to put two of the magnets together and she could feel them repelling then she needed to turn one of them around. That’s a basic physics lesson on magnets right there.
The instruction leaflet also contains different 2D and 3D shapes that you can make with Geomag. Another big tick towards a playtime maths lesson.
The strong magnets and ball bearings also mean that kids are using their fine motor skills and developing manual dexterity every time they play with them. The bright colours are attractive to children and we’ve been amazed how often our daughter’s come home from a long day at school and instantly asked to “play with my magnets” as soon as she comes in the door. They’ve also been a great way for us to play alongside her after school and as any teacher will tell you, kids say so much more about their school day when you’re not asking them direct questions about it. We therefore seem to have found out so much more about what she’s been up to in school than I do with her older brother and sister.
I think it’s worth saying something about the instruction leaflet that you get inside the Geomag Supercolor 42 piece set. It looks like this is a generic Geomag instruction leaflet. There’s certainly nothing to say that it only applied to the 42 piece set, and this means that some of the models featured in there actually require more than what you have available to you in this set. Some also require more than one of the plastic bases.
I get that this was probably done to save money, but it’s just a shame when your child opens something up and says “Wow! I want to build that” and you have to explain that actually she doesn’t have enough pieces to be able to. Also, the 3D shapes that I mentioned before are depicted as each being in a single colour of magnetic rods. Something that’s not possible with what you have in the box, so again it might need a bit of explaining to some children.
What we thought of Geomag Supercolor
There is absolutely no doubt at all that Geomag Supercolor has been a huge hit with our nearly five year old. Knowing that her older brother is six years on and still playing with some of his Geomag sets tells me that this is a toy that will remain in the house for a good while and having seen the STEM benefits of it in action straight away I’m more than happy to encourage this.
If I was buying this myself I actually think I would go for a slightly bigger set than the 42 piece one that we reviewed here. Obviously that will depend on your budget and as all sets can be joined together to make even bigger creations it may be that your child’s Geomag collection is one that you build up over time.
The quality of all the components is incredibly high, as you might expect from a Swiss made toy, and it’s also great to discover that all the plastic is 100% recycled and the packaging is 70% recycled. If anything the only thing that slightly lets it down is the generic instruction leaflet, but as long as you expect that I’m more than prepared to overlook it as the STEM benefits and play appeal of Geomag completely outweigh that little niggle.
Where to buy Geomag Supercolor
Disclaimer: We were sent the 42 piece Geomag Supercolor set for the purposes of this review. All opinions remain my own. Other Penny Plays toy reviews can be found here. All Amazon links in this post are affiliate links. If you make a purchase through them it will cost you no more, but I will receive a small commission. Thank you for any purchases you do make.