Monday, September 26, 2011

Water Bead Fun!!!

If you have never heard of water beads... you definitely need to get on board with this sensory/play experience for your children!   They are SO COOL!  Water beads are commonly used for floral arrangements and I further discovered they are used in science experiments too!  Keep reading to find out more information on the science behind these amazing water beads and about some products that are very similar.  I happened to find some water beads at Walmart in the Floral/Candle section thanks to a very friendly worker!!  They can also be purchased at much cheaper) and many other places.  As you can see below, they grow to about the size of marbles with the addition of water.  Cassie enjoyed using them as a play environment for her plastic insects and other creatures.  Water beads inspired hours of imaginative play for C!

Here you can see how small they are to begin with....about the size of a beebee.  It was amazing how quickly the water beads grew just after a few minutes!  C enjoyed playing with the water beads when they were tiny too!  ***I reminded her that they were not edible and to never put them in her mouth!!!***  BE CAREFUL with small items like this and children!!!

Here you can see the water beads getting bigger just after an hour!  They don't look so round at first,  but eventually they take more of a sphere shape.

This picture shows how large they can get! These water beads provided such a cool sensory experience!  I would describe the feeling of them similar to grapes that are really smooth and slippery or almost like bath beads!  They took about 6 hours to grow this after preschool they were ready!

C played with them for a long time....well worth the price!!! I spent $6.00 for three colors.  Make sure to buy the water beads that look separated in the package because they form separate spheres better!

C played with the water beads for the next 2 days!!!  Even a week later,  they look like they could be played with too!

The Science Behind Water Beads

I've researched further and these little playful polymers seem to also be used for Science experiments too.
I'm pretty sure this is the same polymer that is found in disposable diapers too.  Here is a some great information about Water absorbing crystals and some experiments you could do with them here.

Some information about Water Jelly they are saving the environment and more science activities here.

More Fun Information

Also there is a toy called Orbeez that looks to be water beads in disguise with fun scented ones and other cool products to go along with them!  There is also another similar  product called Instant Snow Polymer which is basically fake snow and you can purchase it here.

I know we'll be having more fun with Water Beads!!!
Please share your FUN and Experimentation with them!

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  1. This looks like so much fun, I'd even enjoy it. :-) I think I'm going to give it a try, even though my baby is 5...I still think he would like it.

  2. This is so beautiful in every way - how it looks and feel and what all the child can do with these beads! I will go find them here... :)

  3. The world of Animals can be experienced in many different ways!
    Great sensory play for your lovely girl,
    Thanks for linking up at the World Animal Day bloghop,
    Lovely greetings, Angelique and the organsiation for the World Animal Day

  4. These beads are interesting.
    I like the photos here, and the fun C is having.

  5. I've seen these all over the blogs lately. I definitely need to get some of these. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

  6. Good play time for kids...its looking lovely.And thanks for additional info about the same.

  7. I've seen them at the dollar store. Think I need to go buy some...

  8. NO, I hadn't heard of them before, good to know!!


  9. Water beads are gorgeous! My little one would absolutely love this. I have NEVER seen or heard of these before. Where have I been? But it's great to know that something so wonderful and fun for children can be secured for just two bucks! Sheesh, it seems like this should be an art pantry staple at that price.

  10. This looks like so much fun! Do they need to stay in the water after they grow?