At BeKids we offer a diverse number of activities during our After School Program. For the kids it is fun play. They could be doing arts and crafts, playing a game or taking apart old electronics, but in reality, they are learning important skills.
Perler beads is a craft that our BeKids gravitate towards frequently and it is one of those crafts that addresses a good number of learning skills. Perler beads are small beads that when carefully heated will stick together forming a shape. First introduced in Sweden in the late 50's, one of their original uses was for therapy for elderly homes. It wasn't until much later that they gained popularity as a children's toy.
The Perler beads activity gives children the opportunity to not only create an image, but to heat it up and have a finished product they can be proud of. Occupational therapists will often use Perler beads for children with ADHD as it is fun and easy and is considered a perfect focusing activity. The activity is inexpensive and appropriate for any age or gender.
This is activity is a staple for many Maker Spaces. It encourages children to use the following:
-Fine motor skills - Grasping and in hand manipulation skills are used in picku
-Visual perceptual skills - Children will use visual discrimination, scanning and visual memory to remember beading patterns, determine and scan through which beads to use next.
-Cognitive skills - Perler beads take some planning. What will I make? What colors will I use?
-Social Skills - When a group is working on bead projects, they will often share and cooperate.
The best part of Perler bead projects and activities.....THEY ARE FUN!
Perler Beads at Toys R Us - CLICK HERE