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Dry-Erase Boards vs. Water and Sand Tables


Dry-Erase Boards vs. Water and Sand Tables
Water and Sand Tables

Dry-Erase Boards vs. Water and Sand Tables

First of all, let’s talk about what’s right with dry-erase boards: they look nice and clean, they’re easy to use, and they’re inexpensive. What’s wrong with them? Well, they can be difficult to erase at times, they may stain if not properly cared for, and they don’t work as well in large group meetings as you might hope. If you want something that works better than a dry-erase board but isn’t too expensive or time-consuming to set up, consider giving water and sand tables a try instead!

What is a Water & Sand Table?

 If you’re in need of a fun way to display classroom rules, you might be interested in using a water & sand table! This toy is similar to a dry-erase board but it can also act as a math manipulative. Students use the cups for counting and sorting purposes, which are all essential skills for kindergarteners to learn. 

The sand lets students experience the feeling of weight when they move objects from one cup to another or when they pour the sand onto their boards. Another perk of this activity is that it does not require paper or pencils for drawing like a dry-erase board does.

Advantages of Water & Sand Tables

These tables have several advantages over dry-erase boards, including a more permanent surface for writing/drawing/etc., cost-effectiveness, and versatility. The sand is relatively inexpensive to purchase and easy to clean, while the water allows children to experiment with liquids in an interactive way. The water can also be used to create interesting sensory experiences. Disadvantages of Water & Sand Tables One potential disadvantage is that it may not be as sturdy as a dry-erase board, which may make it less ideal for use in a high traffic area or near sharp objects like scissors. 

Another disadvantage is that these tables cannot easily accommodate group collaboration; although students are able to work together on the table's surface, they cannot write directly on it at the same time (unless you purchase multiple tables).

Disadvantages of Water & Sand Tables

Like any piece of technology, water & sand tables have limitations as well as advantages. For example, they’re easy to manipulate and change, but when sand or water are spilled or thrown, there’s no dry erase marker to remove it with! On the other hand, once you spill or throw something on a dry-erase board, you'll never be able to use that side again. 

Another disadvantage is that many children think this type of table is too messy, which limits their creativity since they can't write or draw things in the dirt like on a traditional play table. It also means more work for parents who will need to clean up the mess afterward.

Best Brands for Kids’ Use

The popularity of water and sand tables, though, means there are a ton of brands to choose from, each with its own bells and whistles. The company Endless Play is particularly popular, offering dozens of different styles of sand tables in different colors and sizes. Parents should pay attention to the type of plastic used by the manufacturer as some plastics can contain phthalates, which have been linked to learning disabilities. 

Make sure that the table has a well-sealed lid so that kids can't be hurt by leaking water or sand. Another important consideration for parents is how easy it will be to clean up the sand once it gets dirty. If you're worried about finding your child's belongings on top of the sand, some models come with built-in lids or bins for storing toys. Lastly, remember that when children play on a water and sand table they'll get wet, which could lead to colds and other illnesses if they don't change clothes afterward!

Popular Item for Teachers

If you’re looking for a toy that all kids love, look no further than water and sand tables. These versatile tools provide your class with hours of entertainment in a safe environment. Here are some ways to use water and sand tables in your classroom.

  1. Get everyone involved in the lesson by having them work on the table while they listen or do an activity related to what you're teaching. 
  2. Create small stations around the table where students can explore certain topics, such as The Beach or Build Your Own World. 
  3. Have one student per station with a timer and have each student rotate every few minutes so they get a chance to experience everything at their station. 
  4. Students can also work together at the table during these rotations, which will help with group dynamics.

In addition to being great for group dynamics, water and sand tables are easy to clean up (just pour it out!) and won't get ruined like dry-erase boards would be if someone spilled a glass of milk on them.

Best Time to Use Them

 A dry-erase board is most useful for classrooms where the walls are already full of student work, but water and sand tables can be used in any classroom space or corner. The water table may also serve as a sensory tool for students with special needs to learn or explore something new, while the sand table may be used to teach spatial awareness or mathematics skills like counting. 

A combination of both can also work well to provide additional uses depending on the needs of your class! Some teachers find that the tables are too noisy during lessons, while others find them distracting. You'll have to test it out yourself to see if they're right for you! Either way, this is an interesting alternative to dry-erase boards.

Alternatives to Consider

 A water and sand table is an alternative to dry-erase boards, which have their own benefits but are also prone to failure. The sand table provides tactile stimulation for those with sensory needs, while the dry erase board offers a better writing surface for adults. Some people find the noise of sand in the water distracting, but it can be reduced by covering the area with plastic or foil or by adding sound-absorbing material like cotton balls. 

On the other hand, some children may not respond well to this type of arrangement because they associate sand to play with being at the beach. For these kids, try providing less resistance to wet hands than dry hands so that they'll get more use out of the table's other features. Place your sand toys nearby so they're still encouraged to interact with the table, as well as near other materials you want them to explore. You might also want to experiment with different types of equipment, such as pebbles instead of sand or mirrors on one side.

Where to Buy Them

You can buy a water and sand table from a variety of retailers, including MindWare, DollarDays, Amazon, and Kmart. You can also check your local thrift stores or Craigslist for an old one—they’re not in high demand so they may be easy to find! Once you have it home, set it up with all the materials and have your kids try it out. I'm confident that you'll find this option worth the extra time and money as opposed to investing in dry-erase boards. Your kids will love drawing in the sand, which is infinitely better than rubbing their hands on those dreaded felt markers. And unlike wet chalkboards, the drawings are easily washed away with a little bit of water at the end of the day. 

Plus, you don't need any extra cleaners or chemicals when using this water and sand table because the dirt goes right down into the ground beneath it. The only downside is that once it's full of water, there's no place to put toys when they're done playing in the sandbox. But then again, there's no place for them to put toys anyway!


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