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Cardboard Cutout Animal Magnets and DIY Magnet BoardLast week I introduced you to a new fantastic company I’m working with called Animal Jam.  We made medals to honor all the great things are friends and family members do everyday.  This week I was so inspired by Animal Jam’s fantastic free animal games for kids that we decided to make our own little animals at home.  That’s one of the great things about Animal Jam.  They really encourage kids to think outside the box, create and play, three things we’re all about over here.  And of course, Animal Jam teaches kids all about ANIMALS and what kid doesn’t like animals?  So here’s how we made our very own magnetic wall and cardboard cutout animal magnets to go with it.

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Cardboard Cutout Animal Magnets and DIY Magnet BoardFirst,  I prepared these cute little magnet animals from cardboard.  My girls are a little young for this activity but kids four and up can definitely do this.   I really wanted to make the animals as simple as possible and these are pretty simple.  All you need to do is cut out as many circles as you want from recycled cardboard, paint them in various animal colors, and once they dry add details with sharpies, regular markers or googley eyes.  Oh yes, one thing I did that was important was after I painted each circle I painted a little bit of extra cardboard in that same color so I could cut out ears and glue them to the back.  If you take a look at the shapes, they are all really basic.  Last I glued a magnet to the back of each one.  You can also use self adhesive magnets.

Cardboard Cutout Animal Magnets and DIY Magnet BoardNext , I prepared the magnet wall.  It just took a trip to Lowes for a piece of sheet metal and some gorilla tape.  Yes, there is duct tape, which I am a huge fan of, and there is gorilla tape, which is next level type tape.  Sheet metal is a little heavy so you want to use the stronger tape to hold it to whatever wall you put it up on.  This may be best for somewhere outside because gorilla tape, and duct tape for that matter, will strip the paint off your walls so be careful.  I found a good spot in our Art Playhouse for the sheet metal and taped all four sides to the wall.  The edges are sharp so this is a good way to hide those edges, in addition to attaching the metal to the wall.  You can also drill in the sheet metal and then tape over it.  I wanted to do that but I didn’t know what kind of screws go into metal so I’m waiting on that one till Ev gets home.

You can purchase the materials by clicking the links below.  You’ll probably have to go to your local hardware store for the sheet metal.  That’s a tough one to ship.

magnets, sharpies, paint, brushes I like, googley eyes

Cardboard Cutout Animal Magnets and DIY Magnet BoardOne of the really fun things about Animal Jam is you get to pick and name your own animal to play with.   Some are really silly.  We chose the name Wonkyfoot, which cracked Gigi up so we decided to make up names for our animal magnets  too.  Meet Dizia Cat, Raar Tiger, Kissy Bunny, Vay Vay Pig, Fella Bear and Ga Ga Doo Rooster.  What can I say, my kids are only 3 and 1 and a half : )

Cardboard Cutout Animal Magnets and DIY Magnet BoardI decided to add a little washi tape farm house to the magnet board thinking we can probably play some great games with it also, like sorting which animals live in a barn and which don’t. We can also do direction games like “Put the rooster in the rectangle.  Put the pig on the x, etc.”  I’m sure we’ll come up with a lot more ideas over the next few weeks as we play with our magnets.

Cardboard Cutout Animal Magnets and DIY Magnet BoardJust click below for a peek at some of the awesome animals you can play with on Animal Jam.  Just click the pic below or right here and check out this great site.  Next week I am going to introduce you to Animal Jam Academy.  It’s a super fun and interactive place for kids to learn about animals, create and be inspired by.  I can’t wait to show how Animal Jam Academy is inspiring us!

In the meantime, we have a lot of playing to do with these guys.  Thanks for inspiring us Animal Jam! You can join 24 thousand other fans by following Animal Jam on Facebook.  They post all kinds of new ideas for the games, online safety tips for parents, and  Jammer Art of the week.  This is a really thoughtful and great site for kids and parents.  I’ve been a fan of National Geographic Kids for years and they’ve done a great job with this online platform for kids.  Check them out!

Cardboard Cutout Animal Magnets and DIY Magnet Board