Year 3/4 Autumn 1 (Set A): Forces and Magnets - Magnetic Fun and Games

Play and Learn (P & L) Toys make toys and games that are fun and great for learning.  They have asked you to help them design and test some new products. These toys and games will work using forces and magnetism. If you accept the challenge you will need to brush up on your scientific knowledge and skills and there will be plenty of testing and investigating to be done. Your final challenge will be to design a new toy or game that works using magnetism. 

Hamilton’s science scheme provides children with a broad but comprehensive experience of primary science that systematically covers all of the National Curriculum for England’s science objectives for Year 3 and Year 4 in a two-year rolling programme. Hamilton suggest following Set A in one year and Set B in the next, working from Autumn through Spring to Summer, as we have placed the material that is more accessible for the younger children in Autumn Term, and the more challenging material in Summer Term. (For more information about the mixed year scheme, see our Teacher Support page However, all of the sessions are adaptable, so that you can adjust to your own children and school programme. Each term is made up of 2 blocks of 6 sessions, each of which can be completed within a half-term. Working scientifically, investigations and meaningful outcomes are fully incorporated in each block.

Friends and School Subscribers have access to some additional supporting material, including year and block overview documents, assessment grids and specially commissioned background science documents for Key Stage 2 subjects to give teachers added confidence and depth of knowledge as well as ideas for how to learn more. The relevant assessment grids can be found on the Year 3 and Year 4 science pages.

Supporting documents for science
  • Week
  • Title
  • Download
+ Details
01: All on the surface

You agree to help Ms Pullman from P & L Toys. She asks you to compare the way vehicles move on different surfaces. Can you discover a pattern in your results?

+ Details
02: Forces to be reckoned with!

Ms Pullman has some new challenges. Can you identify the different forces at work in a selection of toys? She also wants you to find out how much force is needed to pull toys (or other objects) of different weights. Can you set up a fair test to find out?

+ Details
03: A question of magnetism

Begin to explore the mysterious world of magnetism and ask some scientific questions. Can you begin to find some answers by setting up a fair test? 

+ Details
04: Attractive materials

Can you solve the mystery of which materials are magnetic and which are not? Test your predictions and ask more questions. Is it as simple as you first thought? 

+ Details
05: Poles apart

How do magnets behave towards each other? Investigate the forces of attraction and repulsion and form your own theories to explain what you find.

+ Details
06: Fun and games

It’s time to design and create an exciting toy or game that works using magnetism for P & L Toys. Can you explain how it is played and what children will learn from it?