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Sensory Bin Ideas for Play Routines

Sensory bins can be a fun addition to add to your play routines. They can be a great way for children to explore and learn through hands-on play. Sensory bins support child’s development as they improve fine motor skills (small movements with fingers/hands), sensory exploration, play skills, language development. When starting your own sensory bin, play with your child by following their lead, copying their actions, and narrating throughout the play.

Try creating your own sensory bin with safe and common household items that will grab your child’s interest. Start with a shallow container (e.g., Tupperware containers) and fill it with filler material and different toys, pieces, and/or objects. Below are some ideas to help get you started in thinking and creating your own sensory bin, the combinations are endless.

Winter Sensory Bin: Grab a large container/tote and bring snow inside for your child to play with. Try incorporating small shovels, buckets, cars, and dump trucks to make the play more fun and exciting!

Valentines Day Sensory Bin: Grab a large container/bin and some shredded paper. Try including gems, pompoms or pipe cleaners and try hiding them in the paper for your child to find.

Macaroni Sensory Bin: Grab a large container/tote and throw some uncooked macaroni in it. Add some small shovels, tongs, measuring spoons, or dump trucks to mix the macaroni up.

Gardening Sensory Bin: Grab a large container/tote and a small bag of soil. Try including some of your children’s play food, some fake flowers or bugs, small flowerpots and shovels.

Water Sensory Bin: Grab a large container/tote and fill it up with water. Try also adding some bubbles or food colouring to make it more fun! Add some of your children’s tub toys like a rubber ducky, or sea creatures.

When choosing items for your sensory bin, use items that won’t be a choking risk to your child and items that are nontoxic. Toddlers should be supervised when using a sensory bin to ensure they are safe while playing.

If you want to learn more about QuickStart Nova Scotia or have questions, email us at or call 902-593-1015.