Nicci Louise

Proofreader, Copy Editor & Book reviewer

Using beads for counting, and salt for writing.

I’ve struggled with homeschooling and uploading things to 3 different school accounts, the twins need more hands on play based learning, whereas Draven needs to be doing writing, reading and maths. So I’ve started choosing something to do, that all of them can be involved in, and then I split tasks so Draven can focus on maths or writing, and the twins can do something like drawing, or counting. Then I’ll send the twins off on a chore task of emptying the box of toys collected from the evening before, they need to put that away, before gaining the iPad or having free play, this mean I can focus on helping Draven with any work sent from school.

This morning I popped trays with beads, pipe cleaners and number cards on the table, and asked the twins to thread beads onto the pipe cleaners to match with the numbers. Draven was given a tray with cut up straws and counters and a sheet with number bond additions on.

They both did really well with number recognition, and counting the beads along with threading the beads onto the pipe cleaners. I figured doing it this way would help several areas, of fine motor skills, counting and recognising numbers along with following instructions.

Camilo was really proud of himself for doing it with no help, he checked several of them and recounted checking he had the right number of beads, before moving onto the next one.

Cosima struggled a little bit with understanding what she needed to do, but once she understood she was fine. She did struggle with the higher numbers, but she could see where she went wrong when she re counted. She was so proud of herself.


After this they made themselves bracelets and necklaces, making patterns using the beads. Once they’d finished I gave them a little tray each with some salt in, a paint brush and some letter cards. The letters were letters in their name, C O M L along with S A T P I N.

They both had a lot of fun doing this.

When they finished with the group of letters they were given, they then swapped so they could do all the letters. Cosima was happy afterwards just to draw shapes in the salt and re shake and draw again, so I sent Camilo off to watch some Jolly Phonics on youtube, whilst I helped Draven with a reading task I’d set which meant he needed to read a short story and then answer some questions.

The coloured trays, beads and pipe cleaners I picked up from The Works for a couple of quid, and the little trays I put salt in are trays Falafels come in, which I washed out. I printed the letters from Twinkl but you could just use Word or Pages to type letters and then print those out or just write them on pieces of paper.


Nicci xx


NByou do need to register now for a paid account with Twinkl, but if your kids are still out of school right now and you want to give them some extra help then it’s worth it, I’ve gone for the £9.99 a month option because if the kids can go back to school properly come September then I probably won’t need it after then, and paying monthly means you can cancel anytime, you also get a free  book from their book club once a month.

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