Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Sensory Play

Water Beads & Golf Tees – Fine Motor Activity

Who would think about waterbeads & golf tees combination. Odd right! Well someone did and luckily i came across this activity on Pinterest. This is a great activity to develop fine motor skills, concentration, patience & perseverance.

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What you need

  • Water Beads
  • Golf tees
  • Styrofoam block
  • You could find all the items in dollar store.

We did this activity almost 2 months back. A & D pushed the golf tees into the styrofoam anywhere they wanted – went on for a while – poking it in and taking it out. This was the first time they are handling golf tees & styrofoam and so they were quite excited about it. This was a great fine motor exercise for the little fingers.

Then i helped them put the golf tees in straight lines. Gave them water beads and asked to place it on the golf tees. They both did it with so much concentration. Everytime you touch the already placed water bead, few others fell down along with it – like dominoes. They got a little frustrated but kept doing it all over. They just didn’t give up until A got 90% of the beads to stay & D one straight row.

Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Sensory Play

Marble Race with Water Beads

Water beads has become our recent favourite. My LOs enjoy playing with their Marble Race toy. They love to see how the marbles race their way down. This time when they wanted to play with it, i gave them water beads instead of the marbles – I must say this was a hit!

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We set up the marble race on a storage bin – its easy to hold the water beads. A & D set their own tracks. It was very simple and small – perfect for the water beads to race down easily. Pinching the waterbeads one at a time and dropping them was a great fine motor practice. Although they loved to dump all the water beads down the ramp and enjoyed watching it roll and pile up at the bottom.

Have you played with water beads yet? Check out how we used them in sensory play & learning activities here.

Posted in Science Activity, Sensory Bin

Pond Sensory Bin – Preschool Science

Spring is the perfect time to explore pond life. This pond sensory bin is a hands-on sensory science activity for preschoolers to learn about pond and the animals that live in it. This was simple to create and worked well for our pond life unit. Learning while playing is always fun and kids remember it more easily.

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What we used

  • Water beads – (we used aqua color, looked much like green)
  • Storage bin
  • Pond Animals – swan, duck, goose, frog, snake, fish erasers ( add turtles)
  • Acrylic leaves ( you could add lily pad made with green foam sheet)
  • Plastic plants
  • Plastic flowers
  • Green wooden blocks
  • Green plastic Easter eggs – for moss
  • Cinnamon sticks – for logs

For Miss A(3.5) this was a learning activity- introduction to what is a pond and pond life. For Miss D(2) this was more of an sensory, imaginary play and learning about different animals.

I told them the waterbeads represent the water in the pond and we can find different animals and plants in the pond – animals, leaves, flowers, small plants, moss, rocks, log, etc. Kids named the animals and other items in the bin.

We also spoke about what the animals in the pond eat. A didn’t like the idea of one animal eating the other. When i told her the snakes eat the fish in the pond, she was very upset. She told me, mummy the fish will be very sad now.. ☺️(aww the innocence and sweetness).

Because we are learning about five senses, I let them smell the cinnamon stick and spoke about how we use our nose to smell – D loved the smell, A didn’t like it much.

Once done with the learning and watching a short video about pond life in YouTube they took to playing with the bin.

They sang some songs playing with the pond animals in the bin – five little speckled frogs, five little ducks went swimming one day, 12345 once i caught a fish alive. Then they filled the easter eggs with waterbeads – scoop and pour, fill and shake to hear what sound it made.

In the evening we drove to the nearby pond – although A was a little upset because there were no waterbeads in the pond πŸ˜‚

The kids enjoyed learning about pond life with this sensory bin and i was really proud when A told her dad, once he was back from work about the type of life we can find in the pond. πŸ˜€

      Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Sensory Bin, Sensory Play

      Water Beads & Shaving Cream – Sensory Play

      I was trying to find ways to play with the Water beads before it gets too small. Came across this activity on Pinterest and thought I’d give it a try. 

      I got to say- it was an ultimate sensory experience. Shaving cream by itself is a great sensory play and when you add water beads to it, its so much fun for kids.

      This activity is so easy to set up. Just take a bin and add shaving cream & water beads to it -(Assuming the water beads are ready to use). Use a sheet to hold the mess.

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      Miss A(3yrs) & Miss D(2yrs) really enjoyed this snesory play. They scooped it up to make icecreams, cones, transferring into measuring cups and also loved to touch and feel with their hands. Pinching the water beads in the shaving cream and picking up was a great fine motor activity. Plus it smells so good!! πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

      If you haven’t tried this yet, give it a try! πŸ‘

      Posted in DIY, Painting & Coloring Activity, Valentine Day Activities

      Painting with Water Beads – Colorful Hearts Poster

      We enjoyed playing with our water beads sensory bin so much, now we are exploring more ways to play with it. Since painting is our all time favourite, we decided to combine both. Painting with water beads is simple easy and fun way to create one of a kind process art. It suits kids of all ages. 

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      What you need

      • Water beads
      • Storage bin or baking pan – easy for kids to hold
      • Washable Paint
      • Paint Paper

      How to

      • Place the paper in the storage bin or baking paper. You could also use cardboard box.
      • Add dollops of paint to it. 
      • Now let your LOs add few water beads to it and shake, shake, shake to create a beautiful one of a kind marbled art.

      Miss D(2 yrs) loved this activity. She enjoyed the shaking part a lot. She shaked it so much that the beads would bounce off the bin. Then would pick it and put it back into the bin and shake more. She created 3 beautiful pieces of marbled art – would have done more, if not for me. πŸ˜€ Miss A(3yrs) tried it just once. She wasn’t as thrilled as D. She just wanted to paint using a brush that day. So she took out her brushes to create a rainbow. We let our marbled art dry overnight. Once dry, i cut out hearts from it and created a poster. 

      Posted in Fine Motor Activity, Sensory Bin, Sensory Play, Valentine Day Activities

      Water Beads – Sensory Play

      Water Beads are squishy, slippery and fun to play with. It’s a great sensory experience for all. (Yes! For all πŸ˜€) Your LOs will have so much fun with them. Although they are intended to be used for floral arrangements, its safe to be played with but not edible. So it may not suit kids who still put things in mouth. Preferably monitor your kids when playing with it.

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      What you need

      • Water Beads – you could get them at any craft store or dollar store from floral section.
      • Water
      • Storage bin – we used toy storage bin

      How to

      • Empty the water beads into the container.
      • Pour water – 1 tsp beads needs 6 cups of water. It grows almost 50 times in size. 
      • Soak them overnight. Our pack said 8-10 hrs.
      • Once big, rinse & drain. Transfer the water beads into a storage bin. 
      • Add any tools to it. We used heart cookie cutters, muffin pans, ice cube tray, acrylic hearts and silicone heart mould, tongs along with some cups and spoons.
      • Now, your all set to play and have fun.

      Miss A(3yrs) & Miss D(2yrs) had an amazing experience with these. They had so much fun playing with it all evening. I couldn’t resist – had to join in the fun and should say it was soothing & relaxing. πŸ˜€ They loved it so much, they played with it the next morning too..

      D was all about scooping, pouring, filling the ice cube tray. She liked to touch, pick and squish- even broke a few. She did enjoy picking the bin and shaking it to see what sound it makes and how the bead moves.

      A filled all the cups with beads. She did like to separate the acrylic hearts from beads and arranged the hearts on the silicone mold. That was some patterning right there. Also she filled each cookie cutter with beads to see which can hold more beads ( learning about measurement) and tried to form hearts with it. She also filled the muffin pans with beads and hearts. 1 bead and 1 heart, then 2 beads and 1 heart, then 2 beads and 2 hearts. I spoke to her about ratios 1:1, 1:2 and how 2:2 =1:1. Although she small for that now – just introduced the concept to her.

      I like how kids learn so much while playing even without realizing. That makes learning more fun. Don’t you think?

      We will be exploring more ways to play with the water beads soon. πŸ˜€

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