I've always wanted to link up with Tara from 4th Grade Frolics for a 'Monday Made It', but because I'm not super crafty I usually feel like my DIY projects will be embarrassed to be linked up with all the other wonderful made its. :) I'm sharing this one because it was super duper easy, and I know it could be a cheap-n-cheerful resource for other classrooms.
With a bread knife and some pool noodles, it didn't take me long to make a whole heap of these giant, soft beads! So far I've just used them during Discovery Play time and as part of our fine motor activities, but I've got plans to use them for patterning and addition/subtraction. For lots of my kidlets threading these babies will be much more exciting than moving counters around, and because they will be laced together it will be easy to see and count each colour and the total. (Don't you hate it when simple number stories aren't solved properly because a wriggly body has knocked a counter into hiding?)
I used 6 noodles in 2 different colours and some thin rope that I found in the storeroom (you could buy something similar quite cheaply from the hardware store). I taped a popstick to one end of each piece of rope to stop the beads sliding off and also popped a bit of tape on the loose end to stop the rope fraying.
There you have it folks, the easiest DIY ever! Let me know if you found this idea useful. :)