Bead Strings can be very useful in independent or teacher led group work as a kinaesthetic resource to encourage systematic problem solving and exploration of number. Maintaining pupil interaction is vital when using any resource.
Estimation Skills Hide part of the bead string in a bag, then show the remainder jumbled up on the fl oor. Ask children to estimate how many beads they can see. Straighten out the string and count together to check.
Ordering Numbers Using the two ends of the bead string, or two or more bead strings, you can make different values, and explore the concept of ‘more than’ and ‘less than’ orally or as part of a number sentence.
Use part of the bead string and explore the concept of ratio, e.g. 10 reds, 10 whites, 10 reds, the ratio of reds to whites is 2:1 or 2 reds for every 1 white. What other quantities of red and white beads have the same ratio as this?
With bead strings this can be boosted via pupil jottings and mark making to support the representations shown on the bead string by a teacher or fellow pupil. It is important pupils are clear about the distribution of beads on these different strings e.g. on a 10 bead, bead string there are 5 red and 5 white beads, whereas on a 100 bead string there are alternate groups of 10 red and 10 white beads. We have compiled some activities so that you can get the most out of our bead strings with your pupils!
1 20 Bead String
This pupil version 20 bead string is ideal for demonstrating jumps, bonds etc. Alternates between red/ white every fi ve beads. Length of string: 26cm, with each bead 1cm.
Each 30 Pk
2 50 Bead String
A great way of building children’s confi dence, especially those who are not yet ready for handling 100 beads. 50 beads alternating between red and white every fi ve beads. Length of string: 65cm with each bead 1cm.