Monday, July 6, 2015

Math is Real Life: Estimating Ounces of Hair Gel

My little boy is 17 months old today.  He currently loves all things sensory, so that's what we spend most of our days exploring.  One thing I've been dying to try with him is...



While browsing Pinterest, I came across this brilliant idea to merge the sensory bag and handwriting.  Basically, you make the bag and place a handwriting or tracing worksheet under it.  So cool!

Idea from In My World blog
Now I just needed to find the instructions for making the bag!  So I searched for "gel sensory bag" on Pinterest.  The most clear instructions I found came from this blog:

Idea from Holly's Arts and Crafts Corner

While she does give general measurements for the ingredients to make the bag, I was longing for EXACT ingredient measurements.  For example, "use about 5 ounces of gel" was hard for me to visualize.  

That's where I ran into....

Hosted by: 4mulafun, theteacherstudioteachingtoinspirein5th, and missmathdork
My bottle of hair gel was 16 ounces, so I couldn't exactly divide it evenly into five-ounce portions as Holly had suggested.  Fourths was easier to visualize since 16 ounces divided by 4 gives 4 equal four-ounce portions.  So, I created a visual for myself by marking the fourths on the bottle with a Sharpie to make my estimating easier.


My proportions are obviously not perfect, but that's one of the great things about estimating!  I knew five ounces would only be a slight bit more than 4 when I was squeezing it into the bag.  In hindsight, I would probably use about 6 ounces, if possible.


Then 10 drops of food coloring went it.  I didn't add glitter, but I imagine this would be the time to add it if you want to use it.  I hear that it adds a little bit of pop to the image.


Then my hubby volunteered to help get as much air out of the bag as possible.  


Then we put it inside another Ziploc and sealed all the edges with duct tape.



I put some tracer worksheets and workbook pages under it to see how it looked.



Just what I wanted!  A reusable writing, art, and math tool!

Have you made sensory bags before?  I'd love to hear what unique things you do with them!

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