Sensory Activities : Edible Water Beads
Edit: Please supervise the children if you decide to do this activity at home.
Water beads or aqua beads are such a fun sensory material. Sensory play activities with water beads as base are sure to be a big hit with the kids. They are smooth, squishy and lend themselves to many wonderful spin offs . Add shaving cream, play under a light table and many more. We did a pond sensory play activity for toddlers with those guys. But the sad part is they are inedible to say the least – swallowing those little guys leads to severe complications. In order to have a much calmer time while playing with water beads I really wished for a look-alike that was safe even if ingested accidentally.
Introducing “water-beads” look-alike BOBA pearls. Sensory activity with water beads look-alike that are safe to eat! Now that will make it baby and toddler safe.
If you are new to boba pearls, check out this article for more information. They are tapioca balls and are used in a popular Taiwanese drink – bubble tea.
Boba pearls are available easily online on Amazon. Here is an affiliate link to the rainbow boba pearls to buy it from Amazon.
I went for the rainbow boba but they come in many colors. Make sure you get the 5 minute boba for a quick recipe.
Then I followed the directions and cooked the pearls. For 1/2 cup of pearls add 5 cups of water and boil them until they start to become tender.
Cover and simmer for 3-4 more minutes and you should get these pearls. Truly they cooked with 5 minutes.
The colors are bright by themselves but for an extra fun sensory activity I wanted even brighter colors. So food colors to the rescue. I added a drop of gel food color and made a batch of rainbow boba pearls. A colorful sensory activity!
My rainbow line up of beads for a fun sensory activity.
I let the boba pearls sit for about half an hour until the color is absorbed and sets in.
Now time to play with this SAFE sensory element.The only think you need to remember is while these tapioca balls are fun by themselves they are sticky and attach to each other. That’s a different kind of fun.
But if you are looking for fun all you need to do is add these beads to a shallow tub of water and the kids are on their way to an extra FUN sensory activity. Since we just used food color to dye the pearls, you will see a small amount of color run into the water. But the kids were having too much fun with these SAFE beads. Add your favorite toys or simply play with your hands!
Notes: They will keep for 2-3 days at the maximum. Store water beads with only with a bit of water. Too much water will muddy out the colors and too little will dry them out.
Thanks for reading
Check out our resourceful e-book filled with many preschool play ideas.
We have also collaborated on another e-book with simple and practical baby play ideas.