250+ Best Sensory Bin Ideas for Toddlers, Preschool & Kindergarten

We have so many awesome sensory bin ideas that are a great way for toddlers, preschoolers and kindergarten age young children to learn about their senses and be able to really get hands-on with touching, feeling and experiencing with open-ended play.

Over 200 sensory bin ideas collage with fuzzy material and popsicle sticks, nerds and other candy, uncooked beans and felt pieces, cotton balls and plastic stars, gel balls, sprinkles, foam soap, beads, googly eyes and uncooked beans, plastic balls, rocks, and rubber toys.

While kids are touching, smelling, listening and even sometimes tasting they’re exploring and learning without even realizing it and that is what sensory activities are all about.

You can change out your own sensory bins all the time because we have over 200 different sensory box ideas for your kids to play with!

What is a sensory bin?

Sensory bins may incorporate a variety of senses: touch, sight, sounds, taste, and smell for children to learn and explore.

Lumiere Children’s Occupational Therapy

The benefits of sensory bins is more than just touching and experiencing the sensory bin. It provides a learning environment of sensory play that helps develop play skills, language development, fine motor skills, social skills, brain development and helps kids complete a cognitive task.

3 small sensory bins in plastic containers that are dry colored rice in red green and yellow
Sensory bins have small pieces and adult supervision is required!

A note of safety: Sensory bins are filled with small pieces and small items that could be a choking hazard for younger children and adult supervision is required at all times.

Our Favorite Sensory Bin Ideas

Here are the best ideas for super fun sensory boxes that we love to ignite a child’s senses. With so many options and great ideas to choose from, it’s hard to pick just one great sensory bin! The best thing is that you can start with different materials you might already have on hand to save yourself a trip to the craft store or dollar store.

Water table sensory play with preschool kids - Kids Activities Blog
Water tables can be repurposed to be a large sensory bin at home or in the classroom.

Giant Sensory Bin Play

The purpose of a sensory bin is to give kids’ senses some unusual input. These big bins are a great opportunity to do that on a big scale so that kids can sit inside and experience with their whole body.

  • Shredded paper in a child’s pool (no water!) makes this duck hunt sensory activity so much fun.
  • My Mini Adventurer has a lovely winter sensory bin idea that celebrates the cold of winter with an arctic bath of different size icebergs.
  • Sensory tub idea that uses a lot of dried beans and bring your dump truck, because this is going to be fun! Get the instructions from Craftulate.
  • Don’t have a water table? Check out these sensory bin alternatives to a traditional water table from Picklebums.
Bead Sensory Bins for Kids - Kids Activities Blog
Beads make really cool sensory bin fillers!

Bead Sensory Bin Ideas

Shaped beads make a really simple and easy sensory bead bin from Artsy Mama. I love the addition of sequins and alphabet beads.

Use star shaped beads for this star sensory bin from 3 Dinosaurs. Kids will love playing with the pointy shapes and then use pipe cleaners to thread the beads during play.

This really cool wooden bead sensory bin comes from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes and uses pipe cleaners as something to string the wooden beads on as part of the play.

Best Sensory Bins with Cars & Trucks Theme

This cars sensory bin uses pinto beans, scoops, bowls, pom poms, cars and stir sticks and can be created really easily at home. Check out all the automobile fun from Intentional By Grace.

This cars theme sensory tub from Frogs Snails and Puppy Dog Tails is super fun and cute.

cars theme sensory bin from Buggy and Buddy
Sensory bin idea from Buggy and Buddy

Buggy and Buddy has a cool sensory box with a car theme. Using black beans as the color of the road, some yellow straws to make dotted lines and then pompoms the color of a traffic light.

Let’s get in some sensory play with a construction theme. My kids always loved anything digger and bulldozer related so this would have been a hit at my house. Check out all the fun from The Chaos and the Clutter.

Farm trucks and the rhythm of life on the farm can be felt with this grits based sensory bin from Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tail.

Water bead sensory play - Kids Activities Blog - child with water beads in hands over large plastic bowl
Water beads are a really fun sensory bin material!

Water Beads Sensory Box Ideas

Water beads are a blast!  Here are over a dozen sensory box ideas where your kids can play with water beads.

Check out this rainy day sensory bin filled with things that are related to the storms raging outside from Paper and Glue.

water bead sensory bin wit fresh flowers from Kids Activities Blog
Water bead sensory activity perfect for spring!

Here is a fun idea to combine clear water beads sensory activities with flowers for sensory play.

Learn more about colors and the rainbow with this water bead sensory idea from Teaching 2 and 3 Year Olds.

Use water beads instead of water to make a sensory bin that is super cool. Via B-Inspired Mama

Have some fishy fun with this neat shark water bead sensory bin! Via 3 Dinosaurs

Make a super fun and adorable monster sensory bin. Via B-Inspired Mama

How about a water bead sensory bin that is called Slippery LEGO sensory play? I love this idea and everything about the juxtaposition of slippery with hard surfaces from Best Toys 4 Toddlers.

I love light table play, and this light table sensory bin is perfectly fun! Via Where Imagination Grows

Taste safe rainbow water bead idea for toddlers from The Train drivers Wife
This sensory bin idea is from The Train Driver’s Wife

This idea to use edible rainbow water beads for a sensory bin is really colorful and cool from The Train Drivers Wife.

Another taste-safe water bead sensory bin idea is an ocean theme from The Train Driver’s Wife.

Make a taste safe rainbow with these special ideas from Life with Moore Babies.

Science Themed Sensory Box Ideas

Sensory materials draw kids into learning more just like science. When you think of science education, you might think of older kids, but younger children are the perfect age for science because of their curiosity! Let’s get some hands-on science sensory play.

Space Sensory Bins

Make a solar system sensory bin for out of this world excitement. Via 1 + 1 +1 = 1

sensory bin that is outer space themed and glows in the dark
Glowing sensory bin idea from Life with Moore Babies

This space sensory bin has two wonderful looks that are completely different…one for the day and one for the night or when the lights are out with glow in the dark fun from Life with Moore Babies.

Outer space fun with cloud dough (duh!) from Mama of Many Blessings has all sorts of out of the world figurines and textures.

How Things Work Sensory Play

Magnetic Sensory Bin from Gift of Curiosity has a rice base and then a lot of things to experiment with as to what a magnet will pick up.

Learn about different geography and ecosystems that happen around the world with this desert sensory bin idea from The Chaos and the Clutter.

Map reading skills are essential and fun with this geography sensory tub from B-Inspired Mama. She uses puzzle pieces to extend the play into a puzzle solving activity.

Jelly brain? Yep! This jelly brain sensory bin idea is from Best Toys 4 Toddlers and full of science-y fun!

nuts and bolts sensory bin for kids - great fine motor control training - from Best Toys 4 Toddlers
Sensory bin idea from Best Toys 4 Toddlers

A mechanical sensory tub? Yep! Best Toys 4 Toddlers has created this cool sensory experience using nuts and bolts. Fine motor skill training has never been more fun.

Let your kiddos break some ice and uncover some hidden toys in this Excavating activity. Via Mama of Many Blessings

With this frog sensory bin and pond unit, kids can have fun while learning about the pond system. Via Enchanted Schoolroom

Gardening Sensory Box Ideas

A garden sensory tub from Wugs and Dooey is almost art! The bin is full of things from the garden including wildflowers and feathers.

Garden small world play combines with a rolled oat base sensory bin themed for the garden from Wugs and Dooey.

Plastic sensory bin full of dirt, seeds, and gardening tools on a patch of grass.
This idea is from Mama Papa Bubba

This garden sensory bin would be great when you’re learning about planting. Via Mama Papa Bubba

Another fun garden sensory bin starts with bird seed and creates a garden path with smooth stones. Check out the details from Frogs Snails and Puppy Dog Tails.

Let your kiddo pretend to grow some of the most beautiful flowers with this sunflower sensory bin! Via Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes

This super cute gardening sensory bin is from Fantastic Fun and Learning and will have kids planting plants and then labeling them with popsicle sticks. Such a sweet spring idea!

Plastic bin full of bird seed, a bird house, and various garden toys sitting on a wooden porch.
Idea from Frogs Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

Make a garden bird seed sensory bin to play in and then let it sit outside to watch the birdies come eat! Via Frogs Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

Gardening in fall means pumpkin patches! Have some fall-themed fun with this adorable pumpkin patch sensory bin! Via Life Over C’s

Peas and Carrots sensory bin from Fantastic Fun and Learning is super cute and has the added benefit of maybe getting more veggies in the kids?

Pretend mud - edible sensory bin experience with worms and more
Let’s make pretend mud!

Let’s make pretend mud! This edible recipe makes for really fun sensory play.

Gardening would not be the same without The Very Hungry Caterpillar sensory bin which is filled with black beans, lentils, brightly colored dishes, bucket, butterfly magnifying glasses, fabric leaves and fabric flowers. Get the step by step directions from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes.

Garden Composting Sensory Play

Try this compost sensory bin that has the added benefit of learning the ABCs from Growing Book by Book with all sorts of gardening goodness.

compost gardening sensory play from Our Little House in the Country
Sensory play idea from Our Little House in the Country

Another composting sensory bin comes from Our Little House in the Country and is the perfect invitation to play using tray, compost, pine cones, pebbles, twigs, leaves, cars and diggers, wooden railway tracks, plastic animals, dinosaurs and loose pieces.

Beach & Ocean Theme Sensory Bins

This beach sensory bin starts with the sensory material of white rice (you don’t even have to color it for this one because it is the color of sand) and uses found and dollar store objects like sea shells.

A pool noodle cut up is the center of this sand and shell seaside sensory bin from The Chaos and the Clutter that is full of seaside colors and things to touch.

This beach small world play has both an ocean and a beach using a water table from Fantastic Fun and Learning.

Beach sensory bin, with sand and shells in a plastic bin on a blue tablecloth.
Idea from Mama Papa Bubba

If you don’t have the opportunity to hit the beach this summer, bring it home with this Beach sensory bin! Via Mama.Papa.Bubba.

Mama Papa Bubba also has a really simple and fun ocean themed sensory bin that uses both water and the bottom of the ocean colors and textures.

This cornmeal sensory bin from Craftulate reminds me so much of the beach because the texture of cornmeal (along with the color) mimics sand.

Excite and Explore has an under the sea sensory bin filled with aquarium rocks, sea week and all sorts of sea life that kids would have to go to an aquarium or scuba diving to experience!

This ocean themed sensory experience for kids of all ages from toddler to early grade school is from Mama of Many Blessings and filled with aquarium rocks and all sorts of small sea toys.

Plastic bin full of edible green and pink sand with shells and tropical flowers and a yellow plastic shovel.
Idea from Excite and Explore

Double the fun with this edible summer luau sensory bin! Via Excite and Explore

Underwater fun takes on a whole new look with glitter sand. This glitter sensory bin idea comes from In the Playroom.

Create sand foam for sensory play! This is a fun idea from Theres Just One Mommy and will have kids enjoying the textures of sand mixed with scented shaving cream.

Another shaving cream ocean sensory bin idea comes from Confidence Meets Parenting with shells and all sorts of smooth textures.

How about a little magic sand in your sensory box? Check out the fun details and instructions from There’s Just One Mommy.

Indoor beach sensory bin from Mama Papa Bubba using sand and other sand play items
Idea from Mama Papa Bubba

This indoor beach sensory bin is just plain sandy fun from Mama Papa Bubba. Grab the instructions to make it happen!

This beach sensory box has decorative sand, sea shells, blue glass gem stones, decorative stones and a shallow container. Grab the info from Stir the Wonder.

This ocean themed sensory tub has some danger because Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes has added in not only sharks, but pirates!

Animal Themed Sensory Play

This is sooooo fun! Check out the Meerkat Manor that Adventures and Play set up for her kids.

This super cute idea comes from Where Imagination Grows and shows how to create a great outdoors sensory experience within a tub.

Inspired by the book, The Three Billy Goats Gruff, Growing by the Book created a sensory play bin for Kindergarten that emphasizes the concepts of big, medium and small.

What the Ladybird Heard - Wugs and Dooey Blog - Sensory Bin

This completely adorable (and very organized) small world play idea has a sensory bin component from Wugs and Dooey. As a great activity after reading the book, you will need craft sticks, oats, animal and people figurines, fake flowers, small shallow dish, toilet roll, small wooden block, wooden box and cereal balls.

Bug Sensory Experiences

These 10 butterfly themed sensory bin ideas come from Suzy Homeschooler and will have your kids fluttering around the house!

This bug sensory bin is from 3 Dinosaurs and filled with beans and a whole bunch of bug and insect goodness based on the child’s interests.

This insect sensory bin uses green colored rice, plastic insects, reptiles and amphibians and plastic rocks and trees from Living Life and Learning.

Plastic bin full of black beans, various plastic insects, a magnifying glass, and a plastic net.
idea from Stir the Wonder

Inspect some cool and creepy creatures with this insect sensory bin. Via Stir the Wonder

Insect learning and fun has never been this sensory! Check out the insect sensory bin from Gift of Curiosity that starts with black beans.

Learning about Lady Bugs? Check out this lady bug sensory box from Gift of Curiosity that is part of a learning module that starts with dried peas.

Bugs sensory bin from 1 Plus 1 is colored rice based sensory fun.

Pre Kinders grass bug sensory table for kids
Idea from PreKinders

Use Easter grass to make a hide and seek bug sensory tub like Pre Kinders did! I love this fun and colorful idea.

Dinosaur Sensory Fun

Discover some rare bones with this dinosaur fossil sensory bin! Via Growing Book by Book

Dino dig sensory bin for kids - Fireflies and Mud Pies
Idea from Fireflies and Mud Pies

Let’s go on a sensory dino dig with Fireflies and Mud Pies!

More dinosaur sensory play can be found with this box from Memorizing the Moments using cloud dough and some very cute dinosaur figurines.

Super fun dinosaur small world play with a fizzing sensory component from Wugs and Dooey.

Fossil matching is part of this dino dig sensory bin from Growing Book by Book.

These dinosaurs live in a chocolate mud world from Adventures and Play…what a fun sensory play idea.

Dino dig sensory bin idea using dinosaur bones and a paint brush as a tool.
Let’s do a dino dig sensory bin!

This dinosaur dig game for kids doubles as a sensory experience and is the perfect compliment to dino lesson plans for the Preschool and Kindergarten crowd. Use a paint brush as a fine motor tool.

Monster Sensory Bins – Monsters are animals, right?

This frighteningly cute monster sensory bin idea comes from The Chaos and the Clutter and is full of squishy texture fun.

Icy monster eyes for kids from Best Toys 4 Toddlers
Idea from Best Toys 4 Toddlers

Icy monster eyes are not only adorable, but great for a sensory experience from Best Toys 4 Toddlers.

Farm Animal Sensory Bins

Check out the farm based fun from Gift of Curiosity that has kids experiencing all sorts of touches, sights and hopefully not too many smells from the farm.

sensory bin for farm theme from Fantastic Fun and Learning

This simple farm sensory bin has all sorts of natural items that give the textures and feels of the farm from Fantastic Fun and Learning.

F is for Farm Sensory bin from Life with Moore Learning is really simple using farm animals and some pop corn.

I love this farm sensory bin because it uses grass as the base of the sensory play. Check out the fun from Frogs Snails and Puppy Dog Tails.

This rice sensory bin could be themed in any way depending on the toys you might already have or the craft store finds you encounter on sale. In this sensory activity example, some farm animals are included!

Animal Wash

This is the cutest idea that combines water sensory play with animals into a hub for washing animals. Think car wash meets the zoo. Check out all the fun from Where Imagination Grows.

Animal Mazes

Idea from B-Inspired Mama

This pre-writing idea is great sensory fun and learning from B-Inspired Mama. She uses a sensory tray of cornmeal to create animal mazes to increase fine motor skills.

Color Based Sensory Fun

Plastic bin full of rainbow foam bubbles and a kid's hands play with them.
Idea from Mama Papa Bubba

Have some messy and colorful fun with this enchanting colorful bubble foam bin. Via Mama.Papa.Bubba.

Bubbly soap foam used in conjunction with a water table is a fun colorful idea from Artsy Mama. Check it out!

This very very red sensory bin is due to Gellibaff and is a unique way to play from In the Playroom. While Gellibaff is designed to go in the tub (now that would be a BIG sensory experience), it works great for a sensory box or bin as well.

Scented rainbow beans in a shallow sensory bin from Kids Activities Blog
Scented rainbow beans are perfect for sensory bins!

Make scented rainbow beans for sensory play.

Try a foaming color sensory bin from Life with Moore Babies which combines all sorts of awesomeness.

Color sorting from a sensory tub is a smart idea for preschoolers from The Weaving Ideas. Using a bin for sorting opens up all sorts of accessory play ideas.

sensory bin from A Little Pinch of Perfect that has colored spaghetti noodles and shaving cream
Idea from A Little Pinch of Perfect

Oh the bright colorful rainbow fun from A Little Pinch of Perfect! Using a large bin, shaving cream, spaghetti noodles, food coloring and a sensory tray she created this amazing fun!

An entire large bin of colorful rainbow spaghetti noodles? I love this idea from the Train Drivers Wife.

Rainbow letters sensory bin from Growing Book by Book is a cleaver way to use paper for sensory learning.

Light play reflection sensory bin from Best Toys 4 Toddlers
Idea from Best Toys 4 Toddlers

Color reflection sensory bin is something I had never seen or thought of when it comes to creating a sensory experience for preschoolers. This genius idea from Best Toys 4 Toddlers uses a sensory bin, tin foil, light cubes and plastic toys.

colored hay sculptures for the colorful sensory box from Crayon Box Chronicles
Idea from Crayon Box Chronicles

Colored hay sensory bin from Crayon Box Chronicles is a fun and colorful sensory experience.

Grab a black light for a very intense sensory experience from Where the Imagination Grows.

The color purple is awesome and so is this purple themed sensory bin for kids from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes.

Or how about the color yellow? Create an entire sensory bin around a color like Serenity You.

Make rainbow corn like Fun A Day instructs for a colorful and really cool textured sensory tub.

Water Activities

Fantastic Fun and Learning shows us how to turn a simple water table into a marshmallow sensory bin!

water sensory bin with funnels and such from Best Toys 4 Toddlers
Idea from Best Toys 4 Toddlers

This really cool water sensory bin idea uses funnels and all sorts of fun containers to play with and interact with water. This is the Best Toys 4 Toddlers idea that is going to be a ton of fun.

Seasonal Sensory Play

Sensory Box Ideas Perfect for the Summer

A summer sensory bin is even more fun when you put it in a small blow up pool! Via The Chaos and The Clutter

summer sensory bin full of colored ice from mama of many blessings
Idea from Mama of Many Blessings

This summer sensory idea is a bin from Mama of Many Blessings and is something you will want to do outside because it is full of temperature sensory fun with ice cubes!

Got peaches? How about using the fresh fruit as a sensory bin for little ones? I love this sweet smelling idea from Suzy Homeschooler.

Fall Sensory Bins

Growing Hands On Kids has an autumn extravaganza fall cornmeal sensory box for toddlers.

This smart idea for an autumn color sensory bin comes from The Train Drivers Wife. It is a great way for younger kids like toddlers to be able to have a lot of safe fun using ball pit balls while identifying colors associated with the season.

fall sensory bin from Rubber boots and elf shoes - child using autumn sensory bin
Idea from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes

This fall sensory bin is from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes and filled with all sorts of autumn sensory fun with wood stove pellets, popcorn kernels and more.

This autumn sensory bin from Intentional by Grace uses pumpkins, gourds, spin tops, leaves, pinto beans and black beans.

For many families, fall means football and this is a really fun idea to get younger kids into the game. Make a fall football sensory bin with your favorite team in mind. Grab all the directions from Fantastic Fun and Learning.

Get into autumn senses and learning with this two fall sensory bin ideas from Suzy Homeschooler.

fall sensory bin idea from the Chaos and the Clutter
Idea from The Chaos and the Clutter

The Chaos and the Clutter has a lovely autumn sensory tub that is full of corn and fall items.

The sights and smell of autumn are on display in the B-Inspired Mama fall sensory box idea that she did with kids after a fall scavenger hunt.

Winter Sensory Bins

Check out the chilly themed fun from Mama of Many Blessings that includes supplies like blue dyed pasta, plastic winter characters, sparkly snowflakes, pom poms, cotton balls, fake snow covered trees, styrofoam balls and toothpicks to make snowmen, blue and white beads.

Too cold outside? Let’s make a real snow sensory bin! This fun idea comes from Creatiful Kids.

winter sensory bin from Paper and Glue has cotton balls snowflakes and other wintery items
Idea from Paper and Glue

This really sweet winter sensory experience uses cotton balls, colorful jewels, snowflakes, pom poms and glitter along with winter words from Paper and Glue.

Frozen fans can celebrate this sensory bin from No Stress Homeschooling with blue food coloring , barley and some measuring spoons as well as some Christmas decorations in a silver color.

This polar exploration sensory bin is super visual and fun – click the translation tab to read it in English.

Snow day sensory bins with cotton balls and an ice cream scoop will be a snow bank worth of fun from Play Learn Everyday.

How about combining the love of sledding with a sensory bin? Check out all the texture-y details from Artsy Momma!

Spring Ideas for Sensory Play

Learning and Exploring Through Play has a really cute spring sensory bin that has the foundation of green rice.

Try a flower button sensory bin for spring! This idea comes from 3 Dinosaurs and is a big box filled with all sorts of different shaped flower buttons.

rainbow jello sensory bin idea from Craftulate
Idea from Craftulate

This rainbow jello sensory play bin is filled with different colors of jello from Craftulate. I thought it would be the perfect sensory addition to any spring showers conversation!

Make spring flower soup! This fun sensory bin idea is from Crafts on Sea.

Spring sensory bin idea includes dirt, flowers and more from Mama of Many Blessings. Grab your garden spade because you will need it.

colored water and fresh flower sensory bin from Happiness is Here
idea from happiness is here

Floating flowers is the theme of this spring sensory bin from Happiness is Here – I love the bright colors.

Let’s make dandelion soup! What a fun flower themed sensory bin from Suzy Homeschooler full of flower fun.

Create a sunflower sensory bin with Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes filled with birdseed, orange glass gems and plastic jewels, colorful sunflowers and sunflower accessories.

Christmas Sensory Bins

Create this Nativity sensory bin filled with crinkle paper and peg dolls from Growing Hands On Kids to celebrate the Christmas holiday.

This colorful and festive Christmas sensory bin comes from Teacher Types and is filed with red and green rice and a lovely Christmas tree.

Christmas sensory bin ideas from Paper and Glue that uses all natural items for the tub
Idea from Paper and Glue

This is a lovely idea from Paper and Glue to use all natural items in the Christmas sensory bin allowing for the natural scents to come through.

Love the idea of a peppermint sensory bin for the Christmas holiday using rice, red and green food coloring, ziplock bags, mint extract and Christmas items. Get all the directions from No Stress Homeschooling.

If you love the smell of gingerbread as much as I do, you will love the idea of a gingerbread sensory tub for kids that includes pine cones and empty spice shakers from Pre K Busy Bees.

This Christmas tree sensory bin is delightfully full of buttons and charm from Best Toys 4 Toddlers.

Christmas sensory bin from You Clever Monkey
Idea from You Clever Monkey

Here is an easy Christmas sensory tray to try for your next holiday celebration from You Clever Monkey.

Grab your tinsel and candy cane ornaments and let’s make a Christmas sensory box with Mama of Many Blessings.

You won’t be able to stop singing Christmas carols with this Christmas sensory box idea from Learning and Exploring through Play.

New Years Sensory Bins

Celebrate the Chinese New Year with this fun sensory bin filled with black beans, pom poms, colorful beads and something that represents the year to come from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes.

Wugs and Dooey used green and brown playdough, dyed blue rice, wooden peg dolls, felt, and plastic animal figurines to make a really celebratory Chinese New Year sensory bin.

St Patricks Day Sensory Bins

The luck of the Irish is sure to come your way with this sensory play idea from Mama of Many Blessings and another idea for St. Patricks day is to dig for coins in the sensory environment.

This St. Patricks Day sensory bin starts with Lucky Charms cereal which makes it a fun idea at my house! Follow the simple instructions at B-Inspired Mama.

st patricks day sensory bin idea from Gift of Curiosity
Idea from Gift of Curiosity

Gift of Curiosity has the cutest idea for a St. Patricks Day sensory bin filled with all sorts of green goodies like gold coins and shamrock shapes hidden in a sea of dried green peas.

Valentines Sensory Bins

This sensory play is themed with red and pink and hearts for Valentine’s Day. From Suzy Homeschooler, you can follow along with the fun playing with silk rose petals, pom poms, heart shapes and foam stickers.

Another Valentines sensory bin comes from Mama of Many Blessings and is filled with heart shaped fun.

And Mama of Many Blessings also has a Valentine sensory experience with water beads that works great in a sensory tub.

This Valentines sensory box has more flower textures and fun than some of the others that we have featured here. You can get the directions and contents from Enchanted Schoolroom.

Easter Sensory Bins

The Chaos and the Clutter has created a fun Christ-centered Easter Sensory bin using all things Easter like faux grass, plastic eggs and more.

All the senses of the Easter season come together in this tub of colored rice and Easter eggs from Gift of Curiosity.

4th of July Sensory Bins

Gift of Curiosity has a colorful red, white and blue bin for the fourth of July. Grab some measuring cups because you will want to get in on the fun.

Let’s have fun with a patriotic sensory bin to celebrate Independence Day – July 4. Life with Moore Babies goes through an entire lesson plan for preschool that includes these sensory tub instructions.

Halloween Sensory Bins

This fall and Halloween themed sensory box is from Mama of Many Blessings and uses all the Halloween themed fun!

Halloween sensory bin idea with different Halloween themed items and black beans from Paper and Glue.

Halloween sensory bin ideas from Paper and Glue are spooky and cute. Check out this full sensory play experience with a base of black beans.

This Halloween sensory bin is perfect for toddlers because it has a cereal base. Check out the younger sensory experience fun from Play Learn Everyday.

This Halloween sensory idea for kids is perfect for a Halloween party for older kids or a sensory experience for the younger ones. Make brains and eyes!

Thanksgiving Sensory Bin

The Chaos and the Clutter has a really fun idea to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday with a Thanksgiving sensory bin.

See above for all the fall and autumn sensory bins that could be adapted to Thanksgiving.

Birthday Party Sensory Ideas

This birthday party sensory bin idea from The Chaos and the Clutter is a fun way to celebrate your child’s day. It is like a birthday party in a tub with party hats, blowouts, streamers, party horns, glasses, ribbon curls, birthday candles (do not light!) and a clown nose.

This birthday sensory bin from Intentional by Grace has all the birthday trimmings in white rice for playful celebration and fun.

If you are having a pirate themed party, check out this pirate sensory bin from 3 Dinosaurs.

I love this Jack and the Beanstalk sensory bin idea from Fantastic Fun and Learning.

Art Sensory Experiences for Kids

Starry Night Art Sensory Tray Idea from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes
Idea from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes

Check out this really awesome celebration of the artwork Starry Night. This sensory tray is filled with an interactive art idea from Rubber Boots and Elf Shoes.

Unusual Sensory Recipes

Life with Moore Learning has a really cool sensory table that is inspired by the book, Night of the Moonjellies. Kids will love touching the different textures and temperatures associated with jello made in mini muffin tins that are a part of this sensory table.

Sludge

Frozen oobleck is cold and squishy, and it doubles the fun of normal oobleck sensory play idea from Inspiration Laboratories

Picklebums created this colorful (bright green) sensory play recipe out of corn flour paste, washing detergent and green paint. It looks delightful!

Another version of what I consider sludge is also called “clean mud”. One fun way to make it comes from Best Toys 4 Toddlers.

This sludge is created from cornstarch and has the consistency of quicksand. Follow along the sensory and goopy fun at Memorizing the Moments.

This goopy sludge started out as a science experiment with Ivory soap and turned into a box full of touchy awesome. See the steps from Life with Moore Babies.

Paper pulp is a cheap and simple way to make a sludge sensory tub for hands on fun and Stir the Wonder has a great set of instructions.

This sensory tub uses an unusual ingredient…diapers…to create a squishy gel experience and then experiment with how to undo it. Get the instructions from Life with Moore Babies.

Oobleck

Inspiration Laboratories has a great way to integrate sensory play with a frozen oobleck play recipe. Frozen oobleck is cold and squishy, and it doubles the fun of normal oobleck.

If you have ever wondered how to make oobleck, we have you covered! It is super fun and check out what you can use oobleck for.

Homemade Cloud Dough Sensory Experiences

To celebrate the book Little Cloud by Eric Carle, Artsy Mama created this really fun homemade cloud dough that works really well in a sensory bin.

Making Cloud Dough for Egyptian Sensory Bin from B-Inspired Mama - two hands mixing corn flour and vegetable oil

B-Inspired Mama has a fun homemade cloud dough sensory bin that uses corn flour and vegetable oil along with an Egyptian history theme.

Make chocolate cloud dough! That sounds heavenly. This simple play recipe comes from In the Playroom.

How about making a moon dough sensory bin like Mama Papa Bubba shows you?

toddler safe cloud dough recipe from Kids Activities Blog - sensory bin shown with two kids playing
Let’s play with cloud dough!

Make a toddler safe cloud dough recipe!

Sensory Games for Kids

Use a kid’s searching ability to create a monster sensory bin from 1 Plus 1 Plus 1 Equals 1. I love the idea of using all the sensory items to have kids build their own monster creature!

This sensory bin is half sensory fun and half fishing game created from colored beans and rice, use magnetic fishing poles to catch a heart. Instructions available from Practical Mom.

I Spy Sensory Bins

This sensory bin works really well for kids of literally any age. It doesn’t just have to be the younger crowd – toddlers, preschool and Kindergarten because it is turned into a game. Check out The Chaos and the Clutter’s version of I Spy sensory bin.

Toddler I Spy includes shapes and colors in this sensory box from Intentional by Grace. I love the use of household items that you probably already have on hand.

Stir the Wonder has a cute I Spy sensory bin idea that uses images and matching skills for the sensory fun.

I Spy sensory box idea from You Clever Monkey
Idea from You Clever Monkey

Another really cool I Spy sensory box comes from You Clever Monkey – check it out!

Food Inspired Sensory Experiences

Sweet Silly Sara has the cutest sushi sensory bin idea using rice (duh) and some sushi accessories she found. What a fun way to touch and feel different types of items.

The Chaos and the Clutter has a really fun candy sensory bin idea that is the perfect compliment to reading the book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!

Sensory Bin Foundations from Your Pantry from Teacher Types

Use things you already have in your pantry as the foundation for your sensory bins. Use of food items in sensory exploration can keep costs down and use things that are taste-safe. Check out this really helpful information from Teacher Types.

Apple Themed Sensory Fun

Apple and Oats are the basis of this apple themed sensory bin from Growing Hands On Kids.

And how about an Apple Pie inspired sensory bin? I can smell it already! Get all the yummy smells from Stir the Wonder.

Here is an apple scented sensory bin for toddlers from Best Toys 4 Toddlers.

Toes in pink rice from No Stress Homeschooling for a sensory bin walk sensation for feet and toes

Sensory Walk Ideas

This walking on rice sensory box idea is super fun and will get all sorts of sensory input through the soles and toes. Check out the instructions from No Stress Homeschooling.

Travel Sensory Bins

Love this idea from B-Inspired Mama about how to make a sensory suitcase that travels when you do!

cars travel sensory suitcase from Wugs and Dooey

This cars themed travel sensory bin has small world play included just for traveling fun from Wugs and Dooey.

Our Favorite Sensory Bags

Sensory bags are a lot like a small sensory bin that is portable and mess-free. Often they make really good travel companions and work well for the younger kids like toddlers.

Here is an ocean gel sensory bag that is perfect for babies and toddlers.

DIY Sensory Bottles & Jars

Sensory bottles are a little bit sensory bin, but much more portable and usually used for calming. Here are a few of our favorites that you can make at home:

sensory bottle for bedtime from Kids Activities Blog - glowing bedtime bottle
Best sensory bottle…ever!

Best Sensory Bin Filler Materials

We have featured oh so many fun ways to fill a sensory tub. Check out the top 10 fillers from Little Bins for Little Hands which include a few of my favorite sensory bin fillers:

  1. Colored dry rice – here is how to dye rice
  2. Colored pasta
  3. Aquarium rocks
  4. Water beads
  5. Colored sand
  6. Shredded paper
  7. Colored salt
  8. Water
  9. Beans
  10. Cloud dough
Over 200 sensory bin ideas collage with pictures of rocks, cotton balls and plastic stars, gel balls, fuzzy material and popsicle sticks, beads, nerds and other candy, foam soap bubbles, and dirt.


A big thanks to all the bloggers mentioned above who allowed us to link to their article and use a photo.

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