A good friend of ours who’s a pre-school teacher shared this wonderfully simple and inexpensive activity with us some months back. It’s perfect for kids about 2-4 years old, and is one of Porthos’ favourite things to do.
What you need:
- 1-2 kg of beans. The cheapest is yellow beans (about $1.50/kg), but you can also mix it with other kinds of beans if you want variety (green, red, barley).
- An old bedsheet or plastic sheet. The bigger the better!
- Things to scoop and stir with. We have a box full of plastic kitchenware like bowls, cups, basins, ladles and funnels
Lay the sheet on the ground, put everything in the middle and let the kids loose! Porthos loves to pour from one big bowl to another, and from as high up as he can manage. (He calls it “waterfall”….) We also got some clear plastic tubing from a hardware store and he just loves to put the beans in at one end and watch them slide to the other end.
The best part is that clean-up is really easy – use the sheet to pour all the beans back into a container – and the beans are reusable!
**Important: Do note that this should be a supervised activity until you’re 100% sure your child understands the meaning of “keep it all on the sheet” and “no putting in mouth/nose/ear/other orifice.”
Here’s a picture of Aramis with the beans. (He’s really a bit too young but what to do, he saw his brother at it and wanted some of the action too.)