Happy Hama Beading

We spent yesterday Hama beading following the Littlesheep’s completing some at a friends house on Thursday.

If you haven’t come across Hama Beads before they are small plastic coloured beads that you place onto a peg board and then iron over to melt them slightly and stick them together. You can buy Hama beads from lots of different places but we got ours from Play Merrily.

Hama beads are a fantastic fine motor activity. Picking up the beads and placing them onto the board helps children develop a pincer grip which needed for the tripod grip for writing.

The filling of the peg board also helps develop a child’s concentration span.

Hama beads can also be used for a bit of colour sorting (the Littlesheeps found that having pre-sorted colours made it easier to complete their creations and reduced frustration when they couldn’t find the one they wanted.

The patterns you create on the board can be as complex or as simple as you like, you can use your imagination to complete your own pattern on the board, create a picture or practice following instructions by copying from a picture / illustration (if you look at BeadMerrily there is lots of inspiration there for you – I love the idea of making bunting that was posted for the Royal Wedding but that will be just as good for the Jubilee!).

The Littlesheeps are at various levels of exploration with Hama Beads. Littlest Littlesheep can completely cover a board with different coloured beads or a single colour whilst the older two are able to copy patterns. We searched for inspiration to fit their current interests on the internet (there is plenty there).

Middle made a (pacman) ghost and a Lightening McQueen with a little bit of help and then made himself a star and sea urchin from Mario Brothers. Biggest Littlesheep is completing some Angry Bird creations (so far he has done the blue bird and two pigs – small and king pig) and also did some free designs himself.

As you can see from the picture they went a bit Hama crazy today (and are already thinking of designs for tomorrow)… I think they have caught the Hama Bead bug (I won’t mention that I actually bought the beads and peg boards that they used today back in November 2010 and they have only played with them once to make coasters as Christmas presents!).

We have now run out of black and mint beads so Angry Birds are on hold until we get our new supplies (which might happen to also include some other shaped boards which should be fun for the Easter holidays).

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