Lacing Colour Sequence Beads

I love skill building activities that can be completed independently and I had hoped the Lacing Colour Sequence Beads would be one of these.  I have used Magnetic Mightyminds and enjoyed watching my children progress through the learning puzzle board cards and achieve a feeling of success while working independently.

Fred, at the age of four, is the perfect age to try out this new set of Lacing Colour Sequence Beads from Quality Classrooms and tell us what he thinks.

The 96 brightly coloured beads are smooth and pleasant to hold but not slippy for little fingers. The 6 colours, red, yellow, blue, green, orange and purple have 16 beads each. The 12 strings are short and the perfect length for the sequences on the work cards, large enough for the beads to fit but small enough to not result in lots of extra lace leftover.

The 18 double-sided work cards are colour coded and have 3 levels:

  • Green (Level 1) contains 2 bead colours and 1 bead space to fill
  • Yellow (Level 2) contains 3 bead colours and 1 bead space to fill
  • Red (Level 3) contains 2-3 bead colours and 2 bead spaces to fill

I gave Fred a green card, a lace and we chatted about the sequence. We named the colours together and I explained the question mark meant there was something missing. We named the colours for the third time and both he heard and saw, the missing bead.

He began picking out the matching red and yellow beads with excitement. He organized them below the card first and then started to lace.

Initially, he did struggle to fit the lace into the bead. The beads have small holes, a perfect fit for the beads with little room for error. While this was a learning curve for Fred it did mean the beads did not just fall off the way they have with other beading sets we have tried.

The lace had a wonderfully long aglet (the stiff part of the lace which both keeps the twine from unravelling and also makes it easier to hold the lace and thread it through the bead) and this made lacing easier, once Fred worked out how to thread.

Two beads in, he had it and was pleased to quickly have made his first pattern.

Of course, when one child is exploring a new learning resource it attracts the attention of the others. Rose came in for a look:

I gave her a choice of cards and she got straight to work.

Her expression and the comment; “I love these games!” say it all.

The gradual increase in difficultly makes it easy for independent progression. This is a set I would use as a choice based activity at home and to teach patterning and sequencing at school.

The beads are perfect for number and counting activities too. Basic number bonds to 10 could be illustrated using a lace and two colours (eg. you have 2 red beads and add 4 blue beads, how many do you have altogether?).

Written by Chris, an elementary and middle school teacher in Pembina Trails School Division.

Top 5 Manipulatives for Infant and Toddlers

Manipulatives are designed to build strength in infants and toddlers, whether that be hand eye coordination, memory, leg or core strength. Here are our 5 most popular manipulatives for infants and toddlers:


The fun and flexible Oball is incredibly easy to grasp and safe to throw. The bright colours and smooth feel are captivating for little hands, while the virtually indestructible design withstands tougher toddler play. Perfect for all ages, Oball is sure to be an instant favourite! The Oball with Rattles is the same classic Oball that everyone loves with four clear rattles filled with colourful beads. Both are available in assorted colours.

Toddler Tough Vehicles

Take to the air, tracks or road with these tough vehicles, including a race car, train, dump truck, airplane, fire truck and police car. This Toddler Tough Vehicles set features no pinch axles and wheels. The cute painted on faces make them even more appealing for little hands. 3″L x 2″W x 2-1/4″H. Ages 12 months+.

Egg Shakers

A classic, these brightly coloured egg shakers are enjoyable for children and adults alike. Sturdy and durable, these larger Egg Shakers (2-1/2″ tall) are suitable for infants and toddlers. They are available individually or in a set of 5. Let’s get music making!

Stack-Up Cups and Cubes

Unbreakable square cubes and round cups can be stacked or nested. An essential for exploring size relationships, Stack-Up Cups and Cubes are fun to stack, smash, build and bash. Their ability to build a large tower and alternatively nest together amazes infants and toddlers alike.  Full stack is 14″H. 18 piece set.

Animal Links

This set of super light interlocking Animal Links can be easily linked together to create a variety of fun chains or exciting three dimensional structures.18 large easy to manipulate pieces made in 3 animal shapes in 6 bright colours, ages 12M+. Stack the shapes, sort by colour and style, make a pattern. Washable and safe, they have been specifically designed to meet the developmental needs of smaller kids, and they don’t make any noise when they fall!

Check out the rest of our wonderful collection of Infant and Toddler manipulatives here.

Fun with Coloured Blocks

First things first: let them play! I have learnt this. If I want to sneak in a little structured learning I have to let exploration happen first. Here is the exploration:

What is under here mummy?

Anyone for tea? Cheers!

A tower

New York Statue (Daisy’s words)

Genuine statue (again her words- don’t know where that came from!!)

Getting bigger…

and bigger.

I incorporated the sneaky learning by colouring a piece of card with crayon. I made boxes that were the same colour as the shapes under the memory caps.

On the other side of the card, I added a 1-12 grid.

The colour matching activity was not a hit so we ignored that and flipped over to the numbers.

This had more interest. We discovered a fun way to stack the blocks. Yes, I was joining in at this point.


  • Discuss shape properties
  • Counting
  • Sorting and making patterns


  • What makes a statue? What do we like to look at statues? Those shapes go together well, why?

This post is part of a special blogaversary link party “Add A Little Learning To Your Play” blog hop

Congratulations to Jillian A Mom With A Lesson Plan, one busy year!

Here are the participating blogs:

    • Deborah @ Teach Preschool 
    • Rachelle @ 
    • Jamie @ Hands On: As We Grow
    • Rachel @ Kids Activities Blog 
    • Valerie @ Frugal Family Fun Blog
    • Bernadette @ Mom to 2 Posh lil Divas
    • Miranda @ Mangoes and Chutney
    • Jane @ Mama Pea Pod