I found some inexpensive wooden beads at Target that I thought would make an easy activity to help my preschooler with his fine motor skills development. The beads also came with pipe cleaners in several different colors.
The first activity that I presented to him was making a bead necklace with the pipe cleaners. I placed several pipe cleaners and the bowl of beads on a tray for him. WJ was immediately attracted to this activity and started beading the pipe cleaners right away. When he finished with the first one he wanted to wear it as a necklace but it was too short so I helped him twist a few pipe cleaners together to make a longer chain for a necklace.
When WJ completed his task he wanted to hang it in a prominent location so everyone would be able to see it, especially his little brother. He’s very interested in sharing whatever he’s doing at the moment, whether it’s making a necklace or watching train clips on YouTube, with his little brother. We decided to hang it on the light switch on our lamp in the family room for all to adore.
Once we completed the necklace, WJ still wanted to work with the beads so I created a simple sorting activity with the beads. I poured the beads on the tray and placed it on a mat on the floor. I also found several cups for sorting.
WJ spent some time sorting through the beads and determining if light blue should be sorted with regular blue and dark pink with light pink. He separated some of the similar colors into different cups and mixed others in the same cup.
In the end, there were just too many beads to hold his attention to complete the sorting task. Next time, I think I’ll limit the number of beads and the number of colors. Then we could also turn it into a counting activity, where I could present a set number of beads of each color and then he could count them at the end.
There are many more activities that can be done with the wooden beads – color sorting, arts and crafts, size sorting and math activities to name a few.
The two featured activities are the ones that we worked on last week. I’ll be sure to post more fun, bead activities as we complete them!