Magnetic Shielding: Magnetic lines stop here

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Testing magnets is always a fun pastime, but here, we're going beyond "will it attract the magnet?" In this activity, learners will investigate which materials allow magnetic fields to pass through or stop the field from passing through.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 18

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)

  • Ceramic donut magnet (a rectangular magnet will also work)
  • Two pieces of cardboard of equal size, about 2 x 2 3/4 inches (5 x 7 centimeters) each
  • Two 1/4-inch dowels, 2 3/4 in (7 cm) or longer (pencils also work)
  • Five or six paper clips
  • Wood craft stick, plastic straw, or any other nonmetallic material
  • Strip of metal strapping tape (or a steel butter knife)
  • Hot-glue gun (alternatively, you can use Elmer's™ glue or rubber bands)


  • Physical Sciences
    • Electricity and Magnetism
      • Electromagnetic Fields
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations


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Access Rights:

  • Free access