Water Bead Play
Does the Polar Vortex of 2014 have you and your Little Pnuts looking out the window, wishing you could run outside and play? We have the perfect activity to help bring a little outdoors in eliciting hours of giggles with oodles of learning through play!
What You Will Need
- Floral Water Beads in a variety of sizes and colors
- A large container
- A variety of scoops, spoons and small containers
- Various Small Toys, ie, Squirting toys, shells, to set the theme
- *Optional – light table (see our DIY light table for how to make your own) Light Box Fun
Prior to play, you’ll need to hydrate your water beads. Simply take your water beads and sprinkle them into your large container and add enough water for your water beads to absorb and plump. We recommend adding at least an inch to two inches of water to the container. The water beads will need 6-8 hours to absorb all the water in the tub. Your Little Pnuts will enjoy watching the time-lapse of your water beads changing and growing.
Once the beads have plumped to the size of small marbles or grapes they’re ready for play. Set up the container of water beads on a table or on the floor. Spread out a variety of tools for your Little Pnuts to use for scooping and stirring. We used regular table spoons, measuring spoons and measuring cups for scooping. We also used small containers to scoop into, pour out and sort.
Establish a theme and decorate accordingly with your small toys. We thought a colorful & playful theme would be fun using the squirt toys the Little Pnuts have in their bathtub. They loved hiding the toys under the beads and scooping them out or feeling for them. The texture of the beads are fun, similar to jello marbles and our Little Pnuts enjoyed feeling them fall through their fingers. They also loved seeing how they would bounce and roll on hard surfaces
Variations of Play
Our Little Pnuts enjoyed a variety of ways to use our water beads. We used scoops and containers to teach volume and mass. Separating the beads using various sized spoons allowed for counting and number recognition, the 1/4 teaspoon allowed one water bead to be scooped up while the tablespoon would scoop 5-6 beads at a time. We were able to segment out colors using our 1/4 teaspoon to scoop one colored water bead at a time and separate them into separate containers.
*We advise that parental supervision should be present at all times. If your Little Pnut is still putting things in their mouth we recommend you wait before introducing them to water bead play.
Water beads really are an amazing way to enhance sensory exploration. Our Little Pnuts enjoyed many hours of learning through play.
Watch the Video:
This activities focuses on the following Developmental Milestones for your Little Pnuts:
Fine Motor Development, Language Development, Focus and Concentration, Sensory Exploration, Cognitive Development, Number Recognition, Color Recognition, Hand-Eye Coordination & Team Work.
—Melissa Pia Bossola Beese, Little Pnuts Founder