Biodegradable packing peanuts are typically made from cornstarch or potato starch, and they dissolve easily in water. When they get just slightly damp (rather than really wet), they stick together quite well. It is this property that makes them perfect for creating shapes, including letters!
For this activity, I set up a tray with the following materials:
- Small container with some pieces of wet sponge
- Small pieces of cardboard for building letters on (which we ended up not using)
- A basket of biodegradable packing peanuts (or grab the multi-colored version called Magic Nuudles!)
XGirl grabbed some packing peanuts and pressed them lightly on the damp sponge. It is important to get the packing peanut damp, but not soggy (otherwise it will dissolve).
The damp packing peanuts stuck together well, and she was able to create a variety of letters.
And once the letter is made, it can actually be picked up and manipulated. So after letter building, your child could easily practice word building with their packing peanut letters because the letters are moveable.
More ways to teach to the alphabet
More alphabet posts from Gift of Curiosity:
- Letter hunt sensory bin
- Erasing letters with a Q-tip
- I spy letter hunt
- Spaghetti letters
- Montessori sandpaper letters
- Making “alphabet soup”
- Mini letter hunt with a magnifying glass
- Letter hopscotch
- Crystallized letters
- Letter hop
- Yarn wrapped letters
- Letter tic-tac-toe
- Rainbow letters