Water Beads Gone Awry {A Solution}

My oh my water beads. I love them. I really do. Some days, though, my sons are a bit too excited to play with them. Yesterday morning was one of those days. I was excited about these water beads. I had plans for them. Outside. (Ah-hem.)

My 3 year old eyed them on the counter before I had the chance (aka “I was using the bathroom”) to prevent him from dragging over the chair and reaching for the bucket. He tried, yes, he tried, really hard in the way a 3 year old can do so to gently bring the bucket to the floor but alas they splattered everywhere.

Our 16 month old thought it was great, smashing them with his little toesies until he slipped and bonked his knee. Our 3 year old was having a blast too until I was unable to get to the box of Cheerios (blocked by a stream of beads) to help him with breakfast.

So, the morning didn’t start off well. I thought hard about adding a substance that would make the beads less slippery (which makes me sad because that is one of the best parts of the material, I think) and thus more manageable as an indoor activity.

IMG 5926 300x225 Water Beads Gone Awry {A Solution}

Deborah from Teach Preschool recently added shaving cream to her water beads and it was a great hit. So, voila, that is what we did and, thank you Deborah, we have a winner.

IMG 5927 300x225 Water Beads Gone Awry {A Solution}

As the shaving cream changed texture it made for a new sensory experience and activity for the boys. IMG 5931 300x225 Water Beads Gone Awry {A Solution}

I suppose the lesson here is if you are intimidated by a material (e.g. playdough, insta snow, etc) like I am often by water beads, think a bit about how you can create an environment of success for you and your child(ren). I try to be as proactive as possible in anticipating where the activity might go so that I can create an environment where my boys can and will succeed. Not easy to do but possible. One final note, whipped cream would be a wonderful edible substitute for shaving cream. Something to keep in mind!

Thanks for choosing to read this post today. I hope that we inspired you.


  1. i don’t think it would be a good idea to add whip cream to the water beads. Since waterbeads are not safe for consumption, it probably wouldn’t be a good idea to put them in whip cream which may lead to accidental ingestion of the beads……..just my opinion.

  2. I love your attitude. Setting our children up for success is the best way to go about fun yet stressfulactivities.
    Allison recently posted…366 Days of Praying for Our Kids – Day 139My Profile

  3. You are SUCH a fun mommy! We need more mommies just like you:)
    Deborah recently posted…The chances in preschoolMy Profile

  4. I love the idea of using whipped cream with sensory play. Sounds tasty and fun!
    Amy recently posted…Pick Up Sticks: Fun and Easy! + Kid’s Co-op Link-UpMy Profile

  5. I love water beads too! It’s coming into winter down here, we were playing with the water beads and I accidentally left them out overnight. The next morning we had FROZEN water beads! Such fun – soooo cold!
    Kate – An Everyday Story recently posted…Reggio: Using Clay – Wire and Bead SculpturesMy Profile

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