Modern Day Drawing Board
A Magna Doodle is a magnetic drawing toy that can be used over and over again. Since their invention, over 40 million have been sold and I think one of my sons was responsible for at least a million of them. Well, maybe not a million, that is an exaggeration, but I sure bought him quite a few. It became a tradition after my grandmother bought him one as a birthday gift when he was about four. He played with it and wrote on it so much, that he wore it out. After that, we had to make sure he had a new one at least once a year, more often twice. Magna Doodles are not only a toy providing hours of fun, but also a good educational tool for children because they are able to practice their letters, write messages, and also create original works of art.
Magna Doodle was conceived in 1974 when four engineers from the Pilot Pen Corporation put their heads together to invent a dustless chalk board.
How It Works
How It Works
The magna doodle concept is rather simple. It consists of a plastic case, two plastic sheets divided by a "honeycomb" layer, a magic pen, and a magic eraser. The pen and the eraser both contain magnets that move metal filings around to form dark lines directly beneath the writing surface. Going from the bottom up, this is how the magna doodle works.
The plastic case serves as a back board for the writing surface, in addition to holding all the parts together. On the bottom of the case is, in order, a long plastic wand, a plastic sheet, a "honeycomb layer", and another plastic sheet. Each cell of the honeycomb is filled with metal filings and suspended in a thick white liquid. The metal filings and the liquid are of the same density so that the metal filings will not sink over time. Underneath the bottom plastic sheet is the eraser, a flat plastic piece with a magnet attached. When this is swiped across the underside of the screen, the filings are pulled the bottom so that it looks as though the top screen has been erased. The plastic pen attached to the toy has a magnet in the end, when you use it to draw or write, it pulls the metal filings to the top and it looks like a dark line wherever you touch the surface.
It is a great concept and it works really well. I would recommend this to anyone who would like to get their child's creative juices going.
Not Just For Children
Adults may also like to use the Magna Doodle to create. It is extremely flexible and easily portable. It can be used just for doodling, to create bullet points for meetings, create sketches, and it can even be used to create great works of art, as illustrated in the following video. I am not an artist but I know what I like.
The Seven Wonders
Fun For All Ages
I mentioned earlier that magna doodles wear out. This is not a criticism, rather it is a testimonial to all the hours that my son played with it. He has fond memories of it and many other people have mentioned it as well. They have many versions of the magna doodle now, including deluxe models, travel sizes, and some that are geared for toddlers. I wouldn't be surprised if, at some point in the future, the chalkboards in our schools were replaced with some version of the magna doodle.
Mary Krenz (author) from Florida's Space Coast on January 25, 2010:
Yes, it is much simpler than i thought. My son loved them, too. Thanks for reading my hubs and for the follow.
nancy_30 from Georgia on January 23, 2010:
Very informative. I never new exactly how they worked. My daughter has one and she loves it. Shes always drawing on it. Its also what I used to teach her to say and draw her ABC's on. Its a lot better than a pen and paper. It seems like when you give your child a pen they want to write on everything but the paper.
Mary Krenz (author) from Florida's Space Coast on January 16, 2010:
I spent many happy hours playing!
Cassandra Mantis from UK and Nerujenia on January 15, 2010:
Wow! My Grandad gave me An Etch-a-Sketch when I was a wee puppy! LOL! This brings back memories! Aaaaaah!
Mary Krenz (author) from Florida's Space Coast on January 05, 2010:
Yes, my grandson is almost old enough for his first one. Thanks for reading.
carolina muscle from Charlotte, North Carolina on January 05, 2010:
This gizmo makes a great gift for the kiddies.