The (Magnetic) Slinky ball is a toy based off the classical slinky as well as the simple joys of playing with a ball as a small child but with a twist.
The outer shell of the ball is comprised of several magnets, each with the same polarity facing outwards. The reasoning for this is that the toy also comes with a pair of gloves in which magnets (with the same polarity as the ball) are embedded. The result is the ability of the child to "levitate" the ball in the center of their palms due to the repeling of the magnets in the toy. This is harder than it seems however, as the ball must be carefully balanced and the fingers/palm held accordingly. This aspect of the toy will focus a child's motor and problem-solving skills while teaching patience as well.
But wait there's more!
The center of the ball is formed from a coiled spring (much like a slinky) that the child can access by separating the two halves of the ball. This will bring a new level of challenge to balancing the ball in the child's hand because there are now two halves of a ball (one in each) with a spring connecting them, changing their center of gravity and mass.
This toy is based off the principles of magnetism/polarity, tactility, and human motor skills.
Carnegie Mellon University
Industrial Design Major, 2012
January 21, 2010