After our short Penang trip, I thought it would be fun for Noah to work on some beach-related activities, since he enjoyed himself so much at the beach. Yes, I try to turn almost everything into a learning experience for him, based on his current interests. I guess old habits die hard!
We picked some seashells there, and I went online to look for ways to preserve the seashells in a creative way. Some suggested keeping little jars of sand and seashells, labelled with the place and date of our visit, but I didn’t bring any sand back, and thought the shells might break if I put them into a jar without any filler materials. In the end, I went to Daiso for some inspiration, and got some magnetic containers with transparent covers, as well as some light blue clay. It turned out the way I envisioned, though I’m not sure we should make the same thing for all our future beach holidays, because we’ll run out of space on our fridge door!
I got Noah to roll the clay, then helped him to flatten and shape it into a circle. We sorted out the seashells we collected, and Noah arranged them on the clay himself. We pressed them in carefully, then left the clay to air-dry for a few days, before coating them with decoupage finish, and putting them into the magnetic containers after they were completely dry. I had some alphabet stickers, so I taught Noah how to spell ‘Penang’, and got him to paste the letters on the transparent covers.
Carefully arranging the seashells
Showing me his work
I went around looking for beach-related activities, and found this turtle painting craft on sale at Popular. Noah loves painting these days, so I thought it would be something fun for him to do. He liked layering the paints on each other, and it took a lot of willpower on my side to not stop him from doing that. I envisioned a pretty, colourful turtle, but the end product was erm, black. *rolls eyes* But okay, he enjoyed himself, and I shouldn’t stifle his creativity, so black it was.
Painting the turtle
Coating the turtle with some decoupage finish as well
I also bought this really pretty Melissa & Doug Mess-Free Glitter Underwater Scenes from the Mothercare online sale, and thought it was such a brilliant way of playing with glitter, without the mess. Noah was fascinated by it for a while, but soon lost interest, and until today, I still can’t get him to finish working on it. Sigh.
Mess-Free Glitter Underwater Scene
Some time back, I came across a little pop-up booth selling children’s craft materials at rather reasonable prices, and bought this sea-themed craft for him. It takes quite a bit of focus and patience to complete, so naturally, Noah took ages to work on it. I had to “compete” with him to paste the little dots on the right circles, otherwise, he would end up pasting the dots on his chair or table instead.
And because I’m such a sucker for pain, I bought this sprinkle foam crab craft from Qoo10. I was quite nervous about letting him try it, as I knew it would probably be quite messy, but I wanted him to have a bit of sensory fun, so I decided to just give it a shot. He loved playing with the little foam bits, and said it was like sand (which he really likes playing with these days). I put everything on a tray, though on hindsight, a deeper tray would have contained the mess better.
He couldn’t wait to get started!
Sprinkle Foam Crab Craft
I made a simple DIY Fishing Game for him some time back, and I think I’ll let him play with that too, but perhaps with the sea creatures buried in his mixed beans sensory bin, to create more of a challenge for him. I also plan to revisit the water-based sensory bin with him, with his smaller sharks and fishes frozen into ice cubes, mixed with the water beads and water.
Do share other beach-related activities that you’ve tried and enjoyed please!