I decided to start out small and in a contained space since Bubs is developing his motor skills.
Voila! The tiny inflatable pool that we got from Toys R Us was perfect for this purpose.
I filled a bowl with a combination of red and green beans (adzuki and mung beans if you want to get all technical). I put smaller bowls, plates, spoons and Bubs, of course, all together in the inflatable pool with strict instructions that the beans were to stay inside the pool.
He had so much fun! He was running his hands through the beans, grabbing fistfuls of beans, transferring them from one bowl to another.
He used spoons, smaller bowls to scoop them up and even fed some to Cookie Monster ;) At the end of the session, none of the beans were left inside any bowls at all!
We'd a tough time trying to convince him to stop playing so we could clean up the pool. After all that, we didn't waste a single bean as we washed them (thoroughly!) and cooked them into red/green bean soup for dessert that day.