Water Beads Canada

… Discover the Amazing World of Water Beads

November 16, 2014
by Carey McMaster
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How to Make Smelly Jelly

smellie jellie
How to Make Smelly Jelly

 Materials needed:
• Water Beads (come in 11-colours)
• Container
• Water
• Fragrance Oil
Basic Instructions:
1. Pour 6 cups of water into a bowl.
2. Add 1 – 10g pack of water beads
3. Add 1 – 2 teaspoons of fragrance. (The fragrance will be stronger if you the maximum amount.)
4. Let the mixture stand for a few hours to allow the water beads to absorb the water, and fragrance. The water beads will swell to many times their original size.
5. Fill containers with the water bead mixture.
Other Helpful Tips:
• Make larger batches to save time. Increase the quantities to make enough to fill 5, 10 or even 20 jars at one time.
• Use a two piece lid and replace the center with cloth, netting or lace. This allows the fragrance to escape, but gives a different look to the container.
• Smelly Jelly can be used in a potpourri warmer for a stronger scent dispersion.
• The mixture can be refreshed by adding 1 – 2 teaspoons of water and a few drops of fragrance after a few weeks.
• Be creative and have fun.

 

October 31, 2014
by Carey McMaster
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What Kid Doesn’t Like Playing With Worms

Worm hunt using black water beads and spaghetti … what fun!  Get a nice big bowl and fill with black water beads (how cool are those) and add cook spaghetti pieces (worms), use cans for worm collecting and let the fun begin.
Worms 1
Look at the long one this little girl found … yuck!
Worms 2
You can also dump the bowl into a sensory table to make it easier for little hands to find those slippery, slimy worms.
Worms 3Worms 4
On and on they went, digging, squishing, splashing and pulling out the “worms” to fill their cans.
Worms 5“Oh no … this one is crawling up my arm.”
Worms 6
“Look at all my little friends … I think I’ll call this one Sally, and this one Sam and this one …”

September 16, 2014
by Carey McMaster
1 Comment

Halloween Sensory Play with Water Beads

Excerpt from littlebins

Creepy Crawly Halloween Sensory Play

Halloween-Sensory-Play-With-Water-Beads-Spiders-And-Eye-Balls 1

Halloween can be such a fun and novel holiday for young children. It certainly doesn’t have to be scary or frightening but it can be a little creepy, crawly and filled with silly sensory play! Sensory play like this hands-on Halloween sensory play activity is an awesome resource for early learning. There are so many ways to increase fine motor, language, social/emotional and play skills!

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July 3, 2014
by Carey McMaster
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Montessori-Inspired Dinosaur Fun with Water Beads

By Deb Chitwood from Living Montessori Now

Water Beads Canada Dinosaur Roll

I’ve wanted to see what water beads are really like, so I found an excuse to check them out! For the Dinosaur Roll and Graph, children can roll the dice and color in the graph, but you can also create a fun hands-on game that’s perfect for fine-motor coordination.

To make the cube, I printed and laminated the cardstock before assembling. It was very difficult to fold the cube after it was laminated. I ended up using clear packing tape to hold it together properly. I think it would work best to just print the page for the cube on cardstock, cut it out, and put it together with clear packing tape, using the tape both as a laminate and a way to seal the cube.

Water beads are awesome for the pincer grasp. I added a bowl of water beads covered with water to the activity. If you have the cardstock laminated and leave a laminate edge, it’s fine for it to get wet from the water beads.  I wouldn’t recommend using water beads for this particular activity for a child who has difficulty with fine-motor coordination and becomes frustrated easily. The water beads require fairly good fine-motor coordination skills and tend to move around easily. For children who have fairly good coordination and would enjoy a challenge, I think the water beads are a fun addition. I sure had fun with them!

Water Beads Canada Dinosaur Roll 1

I’m a fan of cooperative games, and this could be made into a cooperative game where each child takes a turn rolling the dice and placing a water bead on the graph for the appropriate dinosaur. I like the cooperative aspect of having the children work together to add water beads to the graph until one of the dinosaurs reaches 10. Even though the game is cooperative, you can still use it to teach sportsmanship. At the end of the game, the children could shake hands with each other and say, “Good game!” It’s helpful for children to learn the social etiquette for games without the emotions involved in winning and losing. Hopefully, that will make it easier for them to remember to show good sportsmanship during an actual competitive game.

June 19, 2014
by Carey McMaster
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Water Beads … the new craze in kids sensory activities.

Excerpt from http://knittingababy.blogspot.ca

Have you heard about the new craze in kids sensory activities?  They are water beads! This is what water beads look like in their dry state, they come in small 10 gram bags.

10g Packs ...  make approximately 4 cups

10g Packs … make approximately 4 cups

You add the beads to 5 cups tap water and wait 6 hours.  They grow to be about 20mm in size, after 6 hours you drain the water and you’re left with the water beads. They are transparent and coloured and bouncy and squishy and pretty awesome.  That’s my expert description and opinion.  When I showed them to my husband even he was impressed. I love how they sort of “glow”.  They feel really cool when you touch them.
The small 10g bag made over 4 cups of water beads.  They are moist to touch, but don’t leave your hands wet.  They are non-toxic and don’t leave any residue on your hands either.  They are small, so some would consider them a hazard to babies, but I don’t think they are hard enough to cause any real choking hazard.  They are also super slippery, so I’m sure they would just slide right down if swallowed.  The manufacturer indicates that if one is swallowed it will be passed easily and with no ill effects.  They don’t recommend them for consumption of course, and recommend getting medical assistance if a large quantity is ingested.  The only real warning is that they should not go down the drain. I will also mention that the manufacturer also says they are not a toy.  Please note that Sylvie was very carefully supervised while playing.

Sylvie had such a great time playing with these and cried a little when we put them away.  She is going through a lot of developmental changes right now (SO close to crawling) and that has been making her pretty crabby.  She had a great time touching and playing and pouring the water beads.

She practiced picking them up and holding them (see that loose one on the carpet in front of her hand, she managed to pick it up! what a great way to learn those fine motor skills!)  
I couldn’t get any photos of her looking at the camera.  She was way too busy!  We did a few things with her today – let her put her hands in the whole container, poured the beads around her (while she was in the green bin, shown above), poured the beads on the tray.

She helped dump out the container and watched while we put them away later.  She just loved playing with these.

I was surprised that she didn’t really try to put them in her mouth.  She usually puts everything in her mouth, but for whatever reason, these kept her hands busy and out of her mouth.  We still watched her very closely and I would never let her play with these unless we were right there with her.

If you’re a bit worried, there are a few ideas I think you could use to keep the beads out of a babies mouth.

I put some in a strawberry type container, she can shake this and look at it without actually having access to the beads.

They would also feel neat tucked into an empty, knotted balloon.

Alain even said “We should buy more of these” (then I admitted that I already had 10 packs, not just the one pack we were playing with… haha). He seems pretty excited to figure out new ways to play with them with Sylvie.  He’s a science guy and these definitely made him happy.

 

June 16, 2014
by Carey McMaster
0 comments

Water Beads and Ice Activites

Excerpt from http://www.learning4kids.net

Water-Beads-and-Ice - 1

Water Beads and Ice is an open-ended and hands-on sensory play opportunity.  They are so much fun as they are about the size of a small marble and have a small bounce to them if they are dropped on the floor.  They are soft, squishy and smooth to touch, not slimy at all. Water beads promote learning and development in areas such as fine motor, coordination, exploration, colours, sensory, and creativity.  Water beads also introduce children to scientific and mathematical concepts such as absorption.  It also promotes scientific thinking skills such as predicting, observations, reasoning and so much more!

What-are-water-beads - 2

What you will need?

For this play opportunity I set up a small tub filled with ice cubes and water beads.  I was lucky enough to purchase our water beads cheaply at our local craft store but I have also seen them sold on E-bay and in florists.  When purchasing water beads they come in very tiny ball shapes and are hard.  Once you add them to water they become soft, squishy and increase in size.
I later added scoops (measuring cups) to the tub. I originally did not introduce the scoops until a little later as I wanted to my kids to explore first with their hands without any props.  When they were commenting that it was so cold and were starting to rub their hands together, that’s when I introduced the scoops.  This took the play journey to another level and also relief for their hands from the cold ice.
Let’s Playlets-play-water-beads-and-ice - 3

My children spent long periods of time using their hands to search for the beads in the water and ice.  They would gather them up with the ice and tried to melt the ice by rubbing it in their hands.  As the ice melted, there was more water to play with and different size and shape ice cubes.  They loved to collect them up and sort them into colours,  scoop them, pour them, feel them, and gather them in cups.

Let’s Learn Lets-learn-water-beads-and-ice - 6

Learning Opportunities
~Creativity ~Fine Motor Development ~Hand-Eye Coordination and Control ~Cause and Effect ~Concentration ~Spatial awareness – experimenting with shape and space ~Language development – shape names

May 26, 2014
by Carey McMaster
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Sensory Activities : Pond Life Sensory Play

Pond Sensory Bin

Excerpt from http://www.blogmemom.com

Sensory activities which also function as small world play are great kids activities and fantastic boredom busters.  We have created a Savannah scene, a box rainforestpaper plate ocean, a desert and more to come. I love it even more because they work perfectly when I need an activity which will work for 2 different age groups. Toddlers love sensory activities and preschoolers whose imagination are taking off in full speed will adore creating their play scenes.

Please engage in the following kids activity ONLY if the children no longer put foreign objects in their mouths AND an adult is around to supervise. Water beads cannot be consumed!

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May 9, 2014
by Carey McMaster
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Using Water Beads as a Diffuser

Source:
DIY Water Bead Diffuser

A water bead diffuser is a great way to spread the aroma of essential oils in a way that reflects your unique style. Water beads come in many different colors and can be placed in any type of container for storage. Just add a few drops of essential oils into your water and enjoy the aroma of your new home decor.
DIY Water Bead Diffuser 1

What You Need:
DIY Water Bead Diffuser 2
Water Beads (you can purchase from www.waterbeads.ca)

Water

3-5 drops Essential Oil

Container

Directions:

1. Place dry water beads in container.
DIY Water Bead Diffuser 3

DIY Water Bead Diffuser 4 Continue Reading →

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