Do you already know what a sensory bin is and how to make one?
I didn’t, so I went to my favorite activity resource, No Time for Flash Cards. Allie has many sensory tub suggestions, including a lot of things I would never have considered.
Materials for a Basic Sensory Bin
Totally inspired by Allie’s many sensory bin activities, I headed to my pantry cupboard. I found two bags of lentils (brown and red) and a bag of popcorn.
Next, I invaded my craft supplies, finding some sparkly pompoms and foam stickers.
Last, I raided Grace’s Easter basket, choosing 3 small pieces of candy.
I dumped everything into a 9×13 casserole dish.
Playing with our Sensory Bin
I’d always thought that sensory bins were messy and pointless. I was wrong.
As soon as I set the casserole dish down on the floor, Grace dug in, picking out all of the stickers and candy and putting them into a bucket. Eventually, she poured them back in.
Soon, she grabbed Easter eggs and kitchen supplies.
Before long, she had all of the measuring cups and spoons, mixing spoons, and all sorts of cups and bowls from her play kitchen.
She was mixing and pouring.
I was happy to see her pouring the small kernels without much spillage, into the ice cream dish and into the spice jar.
It was irresistible. Joe, Grace, my sister, and I spent a whole afternoon mixing and pouring and sorting and mixing again.
We had sandwiches and ice cream, all imaginary. We passed and shared. It was great.
Grace had fun stacking the filled containers.
Joe spent the afternoon picking popcorn kernels out of our bin so that he could have a snack. It turns out that I used the last of it. Oops!
By the time we were done playing, he had almost enough for an afternoon snack.
The only problem was that lentils and popcorn kernels were everywhere. Fortunately, my sister noticed that this big, metal spoon picked them up with almost no effort. It only took a few minutes to get the bulk of it picked up this way. The vacuum did the rest.
I left the casserole dish in the living room for a few days, and Grace went back to it every single afternoon. She loved playing in it, even when no one was playing with her.
Allie suggested putting the contents of the dish into a giant zip-top bag to save for later playing. I thought that was a great idea.
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