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Marble Roller Coasters 101

Marble Roller Coasters 101

Various types of marble games have been played by kids for decades. Some of the popular ones these days include marble tracks, marble races, marble runs, and marble roller coasters.

You can find plenty of information about marble run toys on our blog, but today we want to spend some time highlighting marble roller coasters.


(Quercetti Skyrail)


WHAT ARE MARBLE ROLLER COASTERS?

Marble roller coasters are science-based interactive toys that work on the principles of physics, particularly changing potential energy into kinetic energy. They're miniature versions of the types of roller coasters you'd find at amusement parks, and they include twists, turns, and loops.

You could attempt to make a homemade marble roller coaster using leftover paper towel roles, pipes, and duct tape. Or you could spend a little money and buy an official roller coaster set.

TYPES OF MARBLE ROLLER COASTERS

There are many different varieties of marble roller coasters on the market. Some are manual, while others are automated so that the marble returns to the top by a battery operated lift.

Manual Marble Roller Coasters

Manual roller coasters can be easily operated because they have less moving parts and are often shorter than their automated counterparts.

Automatic Marble Roller Coasters

Battery operated or automatic coasters have longer tracks with various types of twists and turns, allowing the marbles to cover a much longer distance than manual coasters. They're usually multi-level tracks that contain other features like lighting to make the game more interesting.

MARBLE ROLLER COASTER EXAMPLES

Here are some of the marble roller coasters available on the market today:

Quercetti Skyrail Mini Rail Rollercoaster

This 150-piece coaster allows you to construct its glow-in-the-dark track up to 27 feet. It can be built using the designs in its instruction booklet, or you can design your own roller coaster with its pieces. This marble roller coaster is made in Italy and is suitable for kids ages 6+.

SpaceRail Marble Roller Coaster

This marble roller coaster has 16,000mm of track line. It includes two different tracks and a variety of pieces, such as a full loop, spirals, and drops. The set also includes an elevator and a freestanding base to make for more functional use. This interactive toy is recommended for kids over 15 years old.

SpaceRail Glow in the Dark Marble Roller Coaster

This marble coaster is similar to the other SpaceRail coasters, except that it offers significantly more pieces and glows in the dark. Featuring 36,000mm of track line, it offers infinite possibilities and hours of fun. Similar to the other SpaceRail coasters, it's recommended for kids 15 years and up.

 


Marble roller coasters are just one of the many marble games and toys on the market today. In our experience, they're best suited for older kids and teenagers looking for a challenge in physics and engineering.

To round out your library of marble games, be sure to check out our Marble Genius marble runs, which can be adapted to any age group!

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Finding the Best Marble Run

Finding the Best Marble Run

Finding the best marble run can be a daunting task because there are so many options and the quality differences between products can be significant. No matter how difficult it might be, doing a little research up front will save you a lot of money and frustration later.

Here are some tips to make your marble run search a little easier...

DEFINE YOUR PURPOSE OF BUYING A MARBLE RUN.

It's essential to know the specific reason of your purchase when considering a marble toy. Do you want to build a marble race? Are you looking for a marble roller coaster that requires complex construction? Or are you looking for a traditional marble run toy that allows your kids to create numerous configurations and endless fun?

Once you're clear that you want to move forward with purchasing a marble run, there are additional considerations to take into account.

UNDERSTAND THE COMPANIES MAKING MARBLE RUNS TODAY.

There are a number of companies that sell at least one type of marble run, and each of them have their pros and cons.

Galt

This is one of the better companies that has mostly satisfied customers. Customers who have complained mention its poor design and quality for the price. Galt's primary marble runs don't have see-through pieces -- a feature that tends to be a kid favorite.


(Galt Mega Marble Run Toy)

Quercetti

This is an Italian-made product that has received an average response. Many people are unhappy with its poor quality and flimsy structure. However, Quercetti offers a variety of eye-catching pieces in their sets.


(Quercetti Super Marble Run)

Imaginarium

This company is well known for creating education toys, but reviews suggest that Imaginarium's marble run doesn't live up to their usual standards. The run is difficult to assemble, and once built, isn't sturdy for long-lasting play. They do, however, offer colorful, eye-catching pieces that are sure to get kids excited to play.


(Imaginarium Deluxe Marble Race)

Mega Fun / Mindware / Toysmith 

Each of these companies makes several different marble run toys, but have mixed reviews regarding the quality of product. Mega Fun and Toysmith get the worst reviews in terms of flimsy structure and quality, while Mindware is a more solid option. Toysmith and Mindware marble runs don't have see-through pieces, whereas Mega Fun offers a mixture of both. Be sure to research and read reviews for pros and cons of each one before purchasing.


(Toysmith 80-Piece Marble Run)

Edushape

Edushape has a number of different marble run products. Many of their designs are bright and colorful. Unfortunately, many of their sets get mixed reviews due to the pieces not staying together very well and the bases not being solid enough.


(Edushape Marbulous Marble Run)

Discovery Toys

The Discovery Toys Marble Run was one of the originals and still receives a good response. The pieces are easy to assemble for older kids, but can be challenging for young kids. It's an entertaining set because of additional add-ons, but unfortunately these products have failed to innovate over the years, so the colors and some of the pieces are a bit outdated.


(Marbleworks Starter Set by Discovery Toys)

Marble Genius

Here at Marble Genius, we've gone to tremendous lengths to build high-quality marble runs that are stable and durable. We've researched every product on the market, noting its strengths and seeking to improve on its weaknesses.

Our designs are bright and colorful and feature a number of exciting action pieces. From the very simple to the very complex, Marble Genius has a marble run for every age group that's both challenging and engaging. Our pieces stick together well, but they can come apart easily when built by younger kids. We also provide a higher number of large bases to support the tallest of marble runs.


(Marble Genius Super Set)

DO PLENTY OF RESEARCH BEFORE BUYING YOUR MARBLE RUN.

Before you purchase any marble run, we highly encourage you to do your own research on each of these products so you can come to your own conclusion. Don’t get sucked in by pictures alone, but make sure you pay attention to all of the quality aspects mentioned above. For more specific buying tips, check out these articles on purchasing a fun and sturdy marble run.

Happy shopping!

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Why Educational Toys Are Important

Why Educational Toys Are Important

We all know that kids learn best with hands-on toys, such as Legos, building sets, science kits, and marble runs. But what exactly do our kids learn while they play with them?

The benefits of educational toys cover many aspects of a child's development. Here are a few we'd like to highlight.

BENEFITS OF EDUCATIONAL TOYS

1. Educational toys enhance creativity.

Through educational toys, kids are exposed to different ways of learning and playing. This ultimately enables them to try new things and explore their imagination. A good example is building blocks. While building a structure, kids have the opportunity to explore the world from their unique lens and imagine it in new and exciting ways.

2. Educational toys teach new subjects.

From a young age, children can be exposed to a variety of subjects through educational toys. Examples include learning about different colors, shapes, and words. Older kids can expand their knowledge of science, mathematics, writing, and more. One example is marble runs, such as the ones we make here at Marble Genius. When kids put together a marble run, they're exploring the concepts of physics, engineering, and math...all while having fun.

3. Educational toys develop problem solving skills.

Hands-on toys are designed to provide a problem that needs to be solved. Kids use their own ideas and thoughts to solve it and ultimately reach the given goal. Puzzles are a great toy that enhance problem solving skills. By developing these skills at an early age, kids are equipped to tackle bigger problems as they grow older.

4. Educational toys foster critical thinking.

In order for kids to reach the goal in educational toys, they need to engage their minds with plenty of thought, sequencing, and memory. Multiple senses come into play as they make observations and analyze different problems. Tracking, sequencing, and sorting are among the other skills they learn.

5. Educational toys boost kids' confidence.

Everyone gets a boost of confidence from doing something successfully, and this is definitely true of kids. Once they've worked hard to solve a problem and see the fruits of their labor, they feel more confident to tackle other challenges in the future. By introducing new varieties of educational toys, kids have the opportunity to test new skills and gain confidence in new areas.

6. Educational toys keep kids busy.

As parents, it's a continual challenge to keep our kids entertained without putting a screen in front of them. Educational toys are the perfect solution for boredom, as they offer continual challenges and ignite the imagination. Interactive toys that allow for future expansion are the best at occupying a child's interest for hours.

MAKE EDUCATIONAL TOYS A PART OF YOUR HOME

Keeping a wide variety of educational toys on hand will allow your kids to expand and grow in new ways every day. By stocking your home with puzzles, building blocks, marble runs, and more, kids can explore their creativity, learn new subjects, develop critical thinking and problem solving skills, and grow in confidence. Best of all, they'll have FUN!

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STEM Toys and Their Benefits - Making Kids Smarter

STEM Toys and Their Benefits - Making Kids Smarter

If you have school-aged children, you know the value of education in their lives and the impact STEM toys can have. This is why it's so important to provide them with resources to learn both at school and at home.

STEM toys are multi-purpose learning tools that sharpen kids' knowledge and enable them to have fun at the same time. The toys are not only entertaining and engaging to play with but educational too. In the recent past, the use of these toys for educational purposes has grown tremendously, boosting their popularity among parents across the globe.

DEFINING STEM TOYS

STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. STEM toys are developed with an educational concept for use in learning. They aim at sparking interest in science, technology, and mathematics in kids at a very young age.

For parents and guardians who wonder what benefits their kids get from playing, these learning toys have a significant impact in the educational wellbeing of a child. The attractiveness of STEM toys is seen in the uniqueness and creativity used in the design and making of the toys.

BENEFITS OF STEM TOYS 

Enhancing Divergent Thinking 

There's nothing more fulfilling than seeing a kid with a divergent thinking approach to various situations in life. Kids have become masters and crafters of their destinies, and STEM toys are one way to keep that type of thinking going.

Enhancing Creativity 

Playing with STEM toys from a young age allows kids to be creative and develop problem solving skills. Children often come up with fascinating creations that are not only out of this world, but have also dwarfed other similar innovations by grownups. Such high-level creativity and innovation can be traced back to the use of learning toys at an early age. 

Develop Hand-Eye Coordination 

For kids who get exposed to STEM toys at a young age, hand-eye coordination is a natural skill that's developed. Through building and manipulation of the toys, kids learn the connection between what they see and what their hands are able to do.

Promoting Spatial Skills

Several research studies have shown a strong connection between construction play and spatial skills. Kids who play with STEM toys show a profound interest in construction and often build sophisticated structures that portray the use of fine spatial skills and intelligence.

Building structures invoke kids to use their imagination in creating a mental image on the structure they want to build even before beginning construction. Recent experimental studies have shown that kids with learning toys outperform their peers in mental rotation and spatial visualization.

TOP STEM TOYS 

There's a wide variety of STEM toys available in the market today. Here are some of our favorites:

Magnetic Tiles 

Designed for use by kids ages 2 to 12 years, these toys are a great investment. The main reason they're a favorite choice for parents and teachers is because they come with endless play possibilities. The tiles are joined using magnets, which make it easy for kids to create elaborate structures that can often be taller than them.


(Jack & Roo Mag Builders)

Marble Runs 

The marble run is arguably one of the best STEM toys for kids across the globe. They come in different variations, including starter sets for beginners and extreme sets for pro players. Well-made marble runs boast attributes such as strength, durability, ease of use, ability to invoke high-level creativity, high-end quality, and limitless options of play. (To learn more about our Marble Genius marble runs, you can visit this link.)

Snap Circuit Toys 

Snap Circuits teach the basics and principles of electricity. With over 60 pieces, the toys can be used in creating 300+ different electronic projects. Some of the common pieces in these toys include slide switches, snap wires, music integrated circuits, and alarm circuits.


(Snap Circuits Snaptricity)

STEM TOYS: THE WAVE OF THE FUTURE

We all want to see our kids grow in their skills and knowledge, and inspiring them through play is the ideal way to do that. With the continual creation and development of sophisticated STEM toys, kids are equipped to be an innovative and bright generation in our future and today.

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