When you’re studying something that needs a lot of memorization, like learning a language, prepping for a tough biology exam, or mastering all those pesky built-in Python functions, it’s hard to beat a good old deck of flashcards. It’s the tried and true method of getting tough subjects to stick to your grey matter - especially when you’re on a deadline, and you’ve really got to get this stuff down or you are going to flunk most heinously tomorrow, dude!

But like many old fashioned methods, flashcards can be kind of a pain! You have to spend ages writing them all out on paper, and then somebody knocks them off the table and one goes under the fridge, and then your buddy asks to borrow them but you’re not finished and you’re not going to make him a whole other deck, are you kidding, and now the edges have gotten all bent so they don’t shuffle well any more, and then once you’ve finally gotten everything memorized there’s nothing to do but toss them all out and get started on the next deck. The results may be good, but the process? Frustrating.

Enter the MagTag!

With CircuitPython, you can type out your flashcards in JSON, and you’ll never be stuck writing and shuffling huge decks of index cards again. You can sort them by chapters, support lots of different international fonts, even share them with your slacker buddy with a simple copy-paste. Maybe not the most old-fashioned anymore, but it’s e-paper, so we’re pretty sure it still counts.

Thanks to Unicode font support in CircuitPython, you can quickly and easily make text for any language using free fonts!

This guide uses the e-paper and other hardware features of the MagTag, but note that it does not use any of the ESP32-S2 networking capabilities (WIFI, etc). Setting up WIFI is included in the installation process for completeness, but the final project will not connect to the internet, so you can skip those steps if you want! Just install Circuitpython and the libraries, and don't worry about secrets.py or the internet tests. If you'd specifically like to do a connected IoT project, we've got lots of other guides to do that - check out the full list Magtag tutorials for ideas!


The MagTag starter kit comes with a battery and some magnets included. You'll also need to grab a USB C cable separately, if you don't have one:

MagTag dev board with enclosure pieces, four magnet feet, and lipoly battery
The Adafruit MagTag combines the new ESP32-S2 wireless module and a 2.9" grayscale E-Ink display to make a low-power IoT display that can show data on its screen...
Out of Stock
USB Type A to Type C Cable - approx 1 meter / 3 ft long
As technology changes and adapts, so does Adafruit. This  USB Type A to Type C cable will help you with the transition to USB C, even if you're still...
In Stock

Alternatively, you can get the parts individually, if you'd like to swap out the battery or omit the magnets.

Angled shot of Adafruit MagTag development board with ESP32-S2 and E-Ink display.
The Adafruit MagTag combines the new ESP32-S2 wireless module and a 2.9" grayscale E-Ink display to make a low-power IoT display that can show data on its screen even when power...
Out of Stock
Lithium Ion Polymer Battery 3.7v 420mAh with JST 2-PH connector and short cable
Lithium-ion polymer (also known as 'lipo' or 'lipoly') batteries are thin, light, and powerful. The output ranges from 4.2V when completely charged to 3.7V. This...
In Stock
Angled shot of four magnet feet.
Got a glorious RGB Matrix project you want to mount and display in your workspace or home? If you have one of the matrix panels listed below, you'll need a pack of these...
Out of Stock

This guide was first published on Jan 06, 2021. It was last updated on Jun 18, 2024.

This page (Overview) was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

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