Physical development: Full of beans

Written by: Jenni Clarke, early years author and consultant, based in France
Thursday, November 1, 2018

Beanbags are easy for young children to hold, catch and throw. They can be visually pleasing, tactile and can have the added element of weight, smell and sound. Jenni Clarke shares some simple, fun and increasingly challenging physical activities to share with young children.

Sports Warehouse provides a good selection of beanbags including bumper boxes (pictured) 
Sports Warehouse provides a good selection of beanbags including bumper boxes (pictured) 

Start simple with an interesting box full of beanbags placed outside. Watch children explore the contents of the box, and observe the games they play. Use these observations to make choices about adding resources and suggesting ideas. Ask ‘what if?’ questions to encourage them to use different body parts, such as their feet, knee, head or the back of a hand.

A variety of beanbags, including fabric in different colours; same colour but different textures;
bean bags with letters, numbers, faces, animals sewn or drawn on; light and heavy beanbags;
sparkly, shiny, spooky,  glow-in-the-dark bean bags; bean bags with scents or sounds; old socks;
Items for filling such as dried beans, fabric, cushion filler, dried lentils, tiny bells, crinkly paper.
Bean bags from Sports Warehouse

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