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Have you heard of Pop It fidget toys? They are so popular right now! My boys love them and they are excellent fidgets!
Did you know Pop Its are great learning tools? There are so many ways you can use it either in the classroom or at home for learning. Today I’m excited to share 15 fun ideas!
What Is a Pop It?
Before I share the ideas, let’s talk about what a Pop It is! This fidget toy is a silicone toy that is like reusable bubble wrap! You press a bubble and it pops. I do have to say, it’s much quieter than actual bubble wrap! It’s really fun and kind of addicting!
Where Can You Get Pop Its?
You can find them at Target, Walmart, Amazon, and other stores. If you want to check out the ones I have in the pictures, just click the words below.
Literacy Activities with Pop-It Fidget Toys
1. Alphabet Letters
Practice learning the alphabet! Sing the alphabet song as you pop each letter.
2. Sounding out words
Say a word, then pop a bubble for each phoneme. (Ex: c-a-t)
3. Spelling words
Practice spelling words by popping the letters. You will need to do simple words that don’t have any double letters. This would be great for kindergarteners.
4. Syllable Counting
Practice counting syllables in words. When kids divide words into parts or “chunks” it helps them with the process of decoding.
Say the word, and each time you say a syllable, pop a bubble! (ex: spi-der, win-dow, hos-pi-tal)
5. Word Awareness
Word awareness is simply your students’ ability to hear words as a unit of sound. Words are the largest units of sounds so it is the easiest of all the phonological awareness skills. To practice this, say a sentence and have the student pop a bubble for every word. (ex: I like to eat pizza.) This activity of kinesthetic learning is really helpful for children with weak phonological awareness.
Math Activities with Pop-It Fidget Toys
1. 100 grid
If you get a Pop-It with one hundred bubbles, you can make a 100 grid! This is fabulous for number recognition, counting practice, and seeing patterns in math. Have your students pop the numbers as they count. This will help them count to 100! You can also have them count by tens by popping the far right column.
2. Odd and even numbers
Use the same Pop It (or a smaller one) to practice identifying odd and even numbers. I love how this shows a pattern and will help kids understand how odd and even numbers work.
3. Pop the Number
Take turns rolling a dice and popping that many bubbles. This is a great way to work on one-to-one correspondence and gives meaning to the number you roll. Keep taking turns popping bubbles until you run out!
4. Addition and Subtraction Practice
Practice addition or subtraction with a Pop It. Let’s say the problem is 2 + 2. Have the child pop two, then pop two more. Count to find the answer.
5. Multiplication Arrays
Create multiplication arrays with a Pop It. Just like drawing an array on graph paper, you do it the same way on the Pop It. (I love this for kinesthetic learners!) For the equation 2 x 3, you would pop two rows and three columns. Then you can see there are 6 popped and that is your answer.
More Activities With Pop Its
1. How fast?
This one is simply for fun. Time the child to see how fast they can pop the bubbles!
2. Word unscramble
One player chooses a word and pops the letters for that word. The other player looks at the letters they “popped” and tries to figure out the word. You’ll need to do simple words, like CVC words that don’t repeat letters.
Use the pop it with the alphabet letters written on it. One person chooses a word and the other person tries to guess it. Play it just like a regular hangman game, but with every letter guess, pop the letter on the fidget toy.
4. Marble game
One person sets a marble on the backside of the Pop It. Flip it over and have the other person pop the bubbles until they find where the marble is.
5. Water beads
Place water beads in the bubble sections! This is fun for sensory play.
I’m sure there are many more ways to use Pop It fidgets! I’d love to hear your ideas in the comments!
One more thing…I used a Sharpie to write on the Pop Its. I do have a trick for getting Sharpie off of materials like Magna-Tiles, Lego bricks and notebooks. It sort of works on silicone, but just so you know, it might not totally come off. My method for taking Sharpie off is to take a dry erase marker, scribble all over the letter/number, then wipe it off with a cloth. You can also scratch it off with a fingernail.
Hope that helps!