Binary Beads

Yesterday was an awful day, as far as the weather goes. It rained all day long and the wind was howling so we decided to have a day at home. To be honest we usually go out, no matter the weather, but yesterday we decided to stay indoors and potter around the house.

My kids got it into their heads that because we were home for the day, it meant they could have a gaming day – erm nope, there’s only so much screen time a person needs! They ended up doing a couple of activities – one was an independant one in our workshop – (there will be a blog post on that one once they finish their projects), and the other one required sitting at the table for a while and concentrating, (mean mama, lol).

This project idea started when I was in our local SCRAP shop recently. This place is like heaven for a girl like me! When we go, I tend to give my kids a budget and tell them to look for what inspires them. We then come home and they get to make something out of their purchases.

This time I found some neon wooden beads. I knew instantly what I wanted to use them for. If you want to try this project at home you will need the following…

  • Beads of any kind. (I used wooden so they would look a little more grown up for my kids. You need 3 colour choices per person)
  • Thin Beading Elastic*
  • Coloured Pencils/Crayons/Markers
  • Binary Coding Worksheets (I was going to create my own but then I found this amazing resource that is kindly being offered for FREE – be sure to leave a good review for her)
After downloading the FREE worksheets I printed off the pages that I wanted to use.
We then separated our beads into colours because all four of us decided to do the project together. This made the bead hunting easier.
We personally decided to use all uppercase letters for our bracelets, but there is the option to do upper & lowercase. Before you make your band, write your name down the left side, as pictured above. then using the chart translate each letter into binary code. Choose two colours to do this.
Once you have finished – it should look something like this.
Once you have finished translating your letters, you can begin making your band by following your pattern page. Our beads were pretty big, (10mm), so we cut approx 24″ of beading elastic so we had plenty to work with. (Obviously you can cut more or less depending on the length of your name or size of your beads).
Your third colour option comes in to break up each letter. You will have eight beads in your binary colours and then one to create a space before the next letter.
Once you have followed your pattern to the end, thread one more ‘spacer’ bead and then tie off your elastic. Because ours were big we can actually use them as necklaces or double them up on our wrists.
This is the one that my husband made – I secretly think he loves it!
My youngest wearing all of them! SO MUCH COLOUR! 🙂

We learned that BINARY CODE is how computers talk and represent information. Basically everything you see on computers is made up of different combinations of 0’s and 1’s.

I got the kids to look up the definition of BINARY, they saw that it means relating to, composed of, or involving two things. So binary code uses only two numbers – 0 and 1.

We found a fantastic website to explain this in more detail to my young mathematicians. You should take a look – we found it really interesting.

After a bit of whinging about having to ‘work’ on a Saturday, my kids actually got really into it. I think it helped that dad & I joined in too. I love that the activity ticked a lot of boxes, including using their fine motor skills. 🙂

Give this one a try – you can get really creative as there are tons of cool beads* out there!

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