Product Type: Hama Art / Craft
Newest Review: ... children, if only because the boxes are very big and impressive. When my son first started using Hama Maxi Beads, it was one of these se... more
Good for keeping children quiet!
Hama Beads 10,000 Beads in a Bucket
Member Name: rosaliecullen
Hama Beads 10,000 Beads in a Bucket
Advantages: Good value
I bought my nieces a big box of Hama beads for when they came to visit me as it was something that was guaranteed to keep them quiet!! Hama beads are tiny straight beads shaped a bit like macaroni pasta which have a hole in the middle. The beads come in an array of colours and in this particular set there are over 10'000 beads that come in the bucket and costs around £10 which is good value for a mixed set. You can also buy bags of coloured beads, so if a particular design requires a lot of red, you can buy a bag of just red beads for around £3. In order to use Hama beads effectively rather than just play with the beads you need peg boards which come in a range of shapes. There are Disney princess boards, flowers, trains etc. The boards are white and have spikes coming out from them which the beads sit on top of. The spikes are not dangerous or sharp, they are just big enough for the Hama beads to sit on top of. Once you have the desired design, the idea is you use a piece of greaseproof paper on top of your design and iron on top of your Hama beads. The heat makes the beads melt together and your design can be gently taken from the peg board (which is obviously then reusable). The Hama bead design then stays together magically.
I do really love Hama beads because some of the designs take AGES and the kids loved spending time with different colours and different beads. The peg boards are re-usable and only a few pounds each so they are good value and for the amount of beads you can get in the mega-buckets like this, they are really good value. My nieces used them from ages 5 and 7 - it depends how mature the five year old is though as the beads are very small so if the child has a tendency to like to eat everything or put them in their mouth, an immature five year old could be too young for this. Seven is probably the perfect age unless very closely supervised by an adult. Obviously an adult needs to be involved as some point to do the ironing of the beads. I would recommend not heating the iron too much as sometimes the beads can melt and look really odd (poor Cinderella once had a very gammy eye!). It literally only takes a minute to iron and doesn't damage the iron as long as you use grease proof paper! In terms of what you can use the Hama beads for, well really they are a bit pointless once they are ironed but the whole fun is putting them together and making different designs. I do know some people use them for coasters or hang them up in bedrooms. In my opinion the novelty didn't wear off for my nieces but that might have been because they were just at our house and not at their own house so they knew there was something fun to do at my house when they came around. I guess there isn't much point to them other than fun and helping with dexterity in little people. It did also test my youngest niece's patience if her beads fell out (which they tend not to unless you knock them hard - she did!) but as she is not the most patient of children this was not surprising (unlike the eldest one who would have spent all day getting the perfect design!).
I think Hama beads are good value for the entertainment they provide. They aren't very messy, they are good for boys or girls (depending on the peg board designs) and they keep kids quiet for quite a while. They are fairly inexpensive and the re-usable peg boards are great. All in all, an excellent "toy" and one I'll definitely be buying for my own child when he/she is older.
Summary: Great toy suitable for a range of ages and both sexes.
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