Water Bead play – 22 months old

This week I am linking an old post about a failed messy play attempt from about a year ago.

A few weeks ago I saw some other posts about playtime with water beads – but up until then I had never heard of them before! Designed for keeping plants watered they come in little pouches and are tiny until you soak them in water, when they gradually expand. The ones I bought said 4 hours so I did them overnight.


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WP_20140321_08_59_23_ProIt is funny stuff, looks a bit like frogspawn, though is a bit bigger!

I chose the blue as I had visions of Monkey playing with it along with cloud dough, so it would be a bit like sea and sand. I got the Tuff Spot out and we had a go. As I expected Monkey was a little wary and unsure of how they felt at first.

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Β He seemed to be having fun, but I was quite surprised at how easily they got smushed or broken up by his little feet and fingers, I hadn’t read about that on anyone else’s post! It’s part of the fun though I guess, Monkey like smushing them up more than anything, though he wasn’t that keen on them getting stuck to his feet!

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He had a bit of a play, but unfortunately he got bored really fast.


And after about 10 minutes he was desperately trying to get out of the tuff spot, so I had to strip him off, clean his hands and feet and let him go. I was gutted, all the effort and all that mess for about 10 minutes, took me longer to clean up afterwards πŸ™

I will try again with it as I have read lots of posts about kids enjoying it, and it’s not like he hated it… but it’s always a bit disheartening when you plan a new playtime or messy play activity and it just doesn’t go the way you hoped it would!

Have you had many play ideas like this, which haven’t worked out the way you’ve hoped?

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And then the fun began...

25 thoughts on “Water Bead play – 22 months old

  1. He might enjoy it next time round, I would give it one more try. I’ve not seen this before but I think it’s something my girls would love as it involves messy play x

    • Yeah i think i will do, but maybe on it’s own rather than with the cloud dough! I’m sure they’d love it πŸ™‚ xx

  2. Oooh so do they go squidgey? A bit like bath pearls?? Haven’t heard if them but sound interesting!
    Boo doesn’t like being constricted to activities, she likes to flit between toys and choose what she’s doing so I’m reluctant to set up activities like this- though I will defo try out water beads and moon sand in her sand/water tray in the garden- it has a lid and is on legs so wouldn’t have to clean it up straight away! We tried footprint painting last week- she was excited until I put her on the paper to walk over! She freaked out at the paper sticking to her feet and being a bit slippery! Totally not worth it!! But I guess it still gives them varied experiences doesn’t it?!
    Where did you get your water beads from??
    Ps- I love monkey’s face in these pics!! So funny!

    • A bit, though not quite, I think they are supposed to be re-usable (when they haven’t been smushed by a toddler) so they do hold their shape 0 they are still looking the same actually at the moment! Loving the idea of using it in the sand/water table – I am so looking forward to doing more messy play outdoors, then I don’t have to worry about the clean up so much! Ah I want to try that outside when the weather is warmer as I can see Monkey running all over the place! I fear he may have the same reaction too but we will see! I got the beads from amazon as I just googled them! Got a selection of colours. haha I love his disgusted face too, it’s dead cute! πŸ™‚ xx

    • The are interesting and I’m sure he’ll like them more when we try them another time, I’m sure your youngest would find them fascinating. Pleasure and thanks for joining in! xx

  3. Oh no, sorry it didn’t work out, but you never know what is going to grab their imagination on any one day. I bet if you try again next week, it will be a different story. It did give him a good sensory experience though.
    I have just bought some of these, but trying to come up with a unique way of playing with them.

    • This is it, it wasn’t a total waste of time, just not quite the activity I hoped for! FIngers crossed for next time! aww I’m sure you’ll come up with something fantastic!! xx

  4. I have seen posts with these, and early fancy trying them, but was worried the wee girl would eat them πŸ™‚ I think we’re past that stage now, but I might wait till we get the water table back out in the garden! I spent ages cooking and dying spaghetti for the wee girl to play with in the tuff spot, she hated it! The 4yo enjoyed it thankfully or it would have been a lot of effort for nothing πŸ™‚

      • Haha yeah not sure they are much good for the digestion – one did head towards monkey’s mouth, but mainly because he likes eating flour (random child) and so sometimes thinks Cloud Dough is food! I think waiting for the water table is a good idea, I might too! Oh no! Thank goodness the 4yo liked it, so frustrating when they are soo not interested in something! πŸ™‚ P.S I make typos in comments all the time! πŸ˜‰ xx

  5. I’ve often spent more time preparing and tidying up before and after an activity than on the activity itself. It’s very de -motivating!! However, unless we trial things we’ll never get to know what works and what doesn’t so it’s worth persevering (at least that’s what I tell myself…) But these do look good fun and I think my little boy would quite enjoy them.

    • You’re absolutely right, i ell myself the same thing – otherwise we’d never try anything new and never find the gems that they love and keep them entertained for ages! Hope he does love them πŸ™‚ xx

  6. That does sound like fun although it is so frustrating when you set up an activity like that and it only amuses them for a very brief time. Had a similar moment last week when my nieces were staying when I covered the table in lining paper so that all four girls could paint. Within ten minutes the paper was almost entirely covered – as with your activity, it took me longer to clean up afterwards! Oh well, always good to give these things a try and hope Monkey enjoys it more next time.

  7. Wow Caroline you are so good to even try! I need to get my act together seriously. lol. I will be looking back at some of your posts for ideas! Such a shame it didn’t last too long. xx #thetruthabout

  8. I’ve not seen the water beads before! Aww what a shame he got fed up so quickly!! Toddlers are such monkeys!! Loads of times I’ve set things out and my daughter has got fed up after 2 minutes!!!!
    Good luck with them next time! x

  9. Pingback: Water Bead Play - 35 mths old - Becoming a Stay at Home Mum

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