Might you be in need of a kindergarten brain break? Some simple items and toys around the house, plus some awesome dry beans, may be all you need!
About four years ago, we began dabbling in simple sensory play, having endless fun with beans on the floor! Simply said: some things never change.
Let me take that back. Actually, everything changes, and quickly! That homeschooler of ours is now in Montessori Kindergarten each afternoon, plus karate a few days after school. The quintessential only child is going to have a sibling soon!
Yet, his need for a kindergarten brain break is strong, and on a recent evening you could feel his energy boiling over, while pregnant Mom just wanted to curl up in a ball on the floor and sleep. A good compromise starts with a container of dry beans!
This dry bean mix is made of pinto beans, black beans, adzuki beans, and black eyed peas. While I love the smoothness (and color!) of just black beans, this mix provides a nice contrast of hues and sizes.
My initial plan for this simple sensory play activity was to team the beans with Jenga blocks and its counterpart, colorful wooden tumbler blocks, plus some mini scoops for beads and nesting plastic food scoops. I sat down and stacked some blocks in a square. He hopped on over, grabbed a scoop and asked if he could put some beans in the middle. Of course you can…
Within about ten minutes he wanted to add in one of his go-to toys after all these years – the Fisher-Price Little People Wheelies Construction Carrier! (Next to the Lil Shopper Set this is probably his most-loved toy over all these years!) Soon of course this construction carrier was stuck in the beans, and the Green Toys recycling truck and dump truck (and other Green Toys vehicles) were on the scene. And a cardboard tube. And a cat.
This allowed me to sneak away a bit and think about another thing on my mind other than sleep: chocolate. We went right into another bean based activity (and a kindergarten brain break in itself!): making black bean brownies!
Beans: thank you for saving the day, and providing not just a kindergarten brain break, but a pregnant mom brain break as well.