Magic Bead Bracelets for the First Day of School

The first day of school is a busy, busy day filled with learning about each other, collecting/handing out supplies, and teaching procedures.  I always try to make it as special as possible for my students by completing fun projects in between all the "business" of the day.

One of my faaaavorite activities is making magic bead bracelets with my kiddos!  I used to make magic play-doh but it involves some prep.  The bracelets are suuuper simple to make, you only need a few supplies, and you don't need to prep much at all ahead of time.

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A set of 1000 magic beads is more than enough for your class.  Each student will need about 20-25 or so beads.  I like to separate the beads into little cups or containers beforehand.  I'm not sure where the pictured containers are from, but these plastic cups with lids would work just as well.  It's also a good idea to use craft trays to help prevent rolling beads, but it's not necessary.

Pipe cleaners are perfect for making these bracelets-- you can use colorful or white stems, it's up to you!  The pipe cleaners are thick and hold the pony beads so they won't roll off the other end.  Both of my girls (5 and 2.5) did a wonderful job making their own bracelets!  I had my almost kindergartener count the beads as she went along.

Once enough beads are on the stems, twist the two ends closed and snip any extra length.  I like to leave a little bit of space so it's easier to slide the bracelets on/off, but not so loose that they fall off.  Then just tuck the ends of the pipe cleaners in so that the pointy part doesn't stick out.

Now if you're wondering what makes these white bead bracelets so magical... the beads are actually color changing UV beads!!  They change colors when outside in the sunlight, just like magic!

Before heading outside, I like to tell my students, "Your bracelets will magically change color if you are going to have a GREAT year in first grade!"  You can then take a little walk outside (if that's allowed at your school) or have your kiddos wait until after school.  They can report back!  I've done this project right at the end of the day so it's fresh on my students' minds as they are dismissed.  The next day they come back and are SO excited to report that they WILL have a great year!!  Some students continue to wear the bracelets day after day, others twist them onto backpacks, and EVERYONE loves it! :)

Feel free to pin the image below to save this post for later or share it with your teacher friends! :)

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