28 Incredible Sensory Bin Ideas for Preschoolers - Simply Full of Delight (2024)

If you need new sensory bin ideas, you’ve found the motherload of inspiration! Here’s 28 sensory bins, complete with pictures to help your creativity come to life!

Each of these sensory play ideas come from my blog. If you want further instruction on a particular idea or want to see more pictures of it, just click through to the article!

This list of fun sensory play ideas includes tons of preschool themes plus holiday and seasonal sensory play as well.

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But first, if you are new to sensory play, you might like to know the benefits of sensory play.

Benefits of Sensory Bins

What are the benefits of sensory play? According toGood Start Learning:

  • Sensory play helps build brain connections.
  • It builds fine motor skills development and encourages language development and social skills.
  • Sensory play helps kids think logically and build problem solving skills.
  • And it helps kids regulate stress.

And of course the best part is that sensory materials spark imaginations and keep kids busy for long stretches!

That’s a HUGE win for both preschool teachers and parents!

Alright, let’s dive into our list of fun sensory bin ideas.

1) Construction Sensory Bin

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Starting off our list is this adorable Construction Sensory Bin.

Kids will enjoy building, scooping, and loading with this cool miniature construction site.

There’s plenty to keep kids busy and engaged in play!

2) Farm Sensory Bin

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This Farm Sensory Bin is another crowd pleaser. It’s sure to be a hit with your animal loving kids!

Little ones will enjoy pretending to take care of the farm animals, feeding them, and driving the tractor.

There’s plenty of opportunities for imaginative play with this fun idea!

3) Dinosaur Sensory Bin

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This incredible Dinosaur Sensory Bin is a roaring good time!

Kids will love hatching the baby dinosaurs, making the volcano explode, and stomping dinosaurs through the beans.

So much fun!

4) Fairy Sensory Bin

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Have a child interested in fairies? This Fairy Sensory Bin is perfect!

Young children will enjoy plenty of imaginative play as they set up their very own fairy garden complete with little mushrooms, rocks, flowers, and creatures!

It’s sure to be a hit!

5) Space Sensory Bin

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Get ready to launch into play with this fun Space Sensory Bin.

Kids will love playing with the astronaut and rocket, arranging the stars and rocks, and more.

Such a fun idea for your preschool Space theme!

6) Car Wash Sensory Bin

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Looking for the easiest sensory play idea ever?

This Car Wash Sensory Bin is SO easy, you’ll put it together in seconds!

This simple water play idea for younger children is my family’s go-to sensory play idea when I need to keep little ones busy.

It’s also a great way to bring the sensory fun outside to your water table!

7) Forest Sensory Bin

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Simplify the sensory experience with natural items in this Forest Sensory Bin.

This sensory tub is full of nature with pinecones, sticks, rocks, acorns, and wood slices.

Plus there’s some more items added to engage imaginations in woodland creature play!

8) Alphabet Soup Sensory Bin

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Mix learning with fun with this Alphabet Soup Sensory Bin!

Kids will love serving up bowls of the ABCs as they engage in this fun sensory play game!

9) Fake Snow Sensory Bin

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Bring the fun of winter snow indoors with this Fake Snow Sensory Bin.

Learn how to make this simple 2 ingredient Fake Snow and discover a couple of ideas for how to use it for sensory play!

10) Arctic Igloo Sensory Bin

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For a truly unique sensory play idea, check out this Arctic Ice Sensory Bin.

Kids will love creating the igloos and then using them for some cool Arctic imaginative play.

Such a great sensory bin for little hands!

11) Snowman Sensory Bin

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It’s time to build a snowman! This cool Snowman Winter Sensory Bin is filled with everything your child needs to create a Winter Wonderland.

You’ll find dry rice, cotton balls, ribbons, and more in this sensory bintable.

There’s plenty of different textures, in this winter themed sensory bin and so many fun ways to play!

12) Hot Chocolate Sensory Bin

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This Hot Chocolate Sensory Bin is sure to be a hit!

Kids will love serving up cup after cup of hot cocoa topped with pretend marshmallows.

This particular sensory bin is always a hit with my kids!

13) Valentine’s Day Chocolate Box Sensory Bin

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For a lovely February sensory play idea, try this Valentine’s Day Chocolate Box Sensory Bin.

Kids will keep busy scooping and sorting the “chocolates.”

This sensory table idea lends itself to plenty of pretend play and interaction between kids.

And of course it’s a great excuse to eat a box of chocolates! LOL

14) St. Patrick’s Day Color Sorting Sensory Bin

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The vibrant colors of this St. Patrick’s Day Color Sorting Sensory bin will delight and engage children in plenty of sensory play fun!

Kids will love filling the pots with gold, beans, and of course color sorting the rainbow pom poms.

Plus, there’s a free printable to help you create your own rainbow color labels for your sensory bin!

15) Easter Color Sorting Sensory Bin

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Bright colors, flowers, and plenty of Easter eggs are in this adorable Easter Sensory Bin.

Kids can sort by color the items within the bin as well as have fun hiding the various creatures in the grass.

16) Insects Sensory Bin

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Need a fun idea to teach little ones about bugs?

Try this Insect Sensory Bin!

Kids will enjoy digging, hiding the bugs, and plenty of creative play.

17) Garden Sensory Bin

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Dig into some fun with this Vegetable and Flower Garden Sensory Bin.

Kids can pretend to plant seeds, pot the flowers, water the garden and harvest the vegetables in this fun sensory play idea!

18) Ocean Sensory Bin

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Dive under the sea with this fun Ocean Sensory Bin idea. You just need a few items to create your very own Ocean creature adventure.

Kids will love scooping, pouring and plucking items out of the water, plus plenty of imaginative play as well.

19) Beach Sensory Bin

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Proving that you don’t need to go out and buy new things for sensory play, this Beach Sensory Bin is great inspiration.

Grab some of your child’s favorite characters along with some sea shells and a sensory filler like colored rice…..and ta da! You’ve got a new sensory experience that’s perfect for summer!

20) Moon Sand Sensory Bin

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Here’s a reminder that you can keep your sensory play simple – all you need is a fun sensory bin filler and something to scoop or stir with! This DIY Moon Sand Recipe (aka Cloud Dough) is the perfect sensory play filler.

It’s just 2 ingredients…and it’s gluten free for all those allergy families out there (mine included!)

21) Ice Cream Sensory Bin

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Kick it up a notch with this fun Ice Cream Summer Sensory Bin.

Showing just how easy it is to make a few tiny swaps to create a new sensory play experience, we added some fun items to our Moon Sand sensory bin, and changed it into a full service pretend Ice Cream Shop!

This messy play idea is so much fun for kids of all ages!

22) 4th of July Sensory Bin

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We swapped out our theming again with the Moon Sand bin to create this fun 4th of July Sensory Bin.

My kids loved making these patriotic cakes and cupcakes to celebrate America’s birthday!

23) Colored Rice Sensory Play

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Some of my very first Sensory Bins used Colored Rice. This easy method to create DIY Colored Rice only requires 2 ingredients – plus your rice!

It’s super simple to make and rainbow rice makes the perfect sensory bin filler when you want something vibrant.

24) Fall Sensory Bin

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This Fall Sensory Bin is so simple and yet, so full of fun!

I love how it brings the colors of fall into a simple sensory experience.

In addition, I love adding wooden figures to sensory bins because my kids get to choose who the person is and imagine what they look like.

Activate those imaginations!

25) Apple Pie Sensory Bin

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Looking for a fun idea for Apple Season? This Apple Pie Sensory Bin is so cute!

Little ones will enjoy pouring, stirring, scooping and creating mini apple pies.

This one is SO much fun!

26) Halloween Sensory Bin

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Get ready to make Monster Stew with this Halloween Sensory Bin idea. Kids will enjoy stirring up green concoctions in the cauldrons, adding spiders, bats, eyeballs and more! What spooky fun for Halloween!

27) Thanksgiving Pie Sensory Bin

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And quite possibly the cutest sensory play idea on the list is…this Thanksgiving Pie Sensory Bin.

Little kids will love pretending to bake their own pies!

They can roll the dough, stir the pie filling, and create their own mini pies.

It’s too cute and such a good sensory bin for the Thanksgiving holiday season.

28) Christmas Sensory Bin

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This Christmas Sensory Bin is full of fun! Kids will enjoy decorating their own little Christmas tree with pom poms, ribbon, stringing bead “lights” and more!

Such great fine motor skills practice and of course, so much fun!

More Sensory Play Ideas

Looking for more sensory play ideas for young kids?

You can find some amazing Premade Sensory Kits here. Find tons of inspiration for building your own sensory kit or buy one premade on Etsy!

There’s some great ideas for Extending the fun of Kinetic Sand here. Find all the best toys for kinetic sand play.

Don’t miss these amazing free printable Play Dough Mats. They are a great addition to inspire creativity with playdough.

Want to save these Sensory Play ideas for later?Pin the image below to your Preschool Sensory Bins board on Pinterest.

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Hi! I'm Crystal! My goal is to provide practical help for parents. I hope you find something inspiring, useful, or simply full of delight!

Insights, advice, suggestions, feedback and comments from experts

Introduction

As an expert in sensory play and sensory bins, I can provide you with a wealth of information and inspiration for creating engaging and educational sensory experiences for children. My expertise is based on years of experience working with children and researching the benefits of sensory play. I have also written extensively on the topic on my blog, where I share a wide range of sensory bin ideas and activities.

Benefits of Sensory Play

Sensory play offers numerous benefits for children's development. According to Good Start Learning, sensory play helps build brain connections, develops fine motor skills, encourages language development and social skills, promotes logical thinking and problem-solving skills, and helps children regulate stress. Additionally, sensory materials spark imaginations and keep kids engaged and busy for extended periods of time [[1]].

Sensory Bin Ideas

Now, let's dive into the list of fun sensory bin ideas that you've mentioned in the article. I'll provide a brief description of each sensory bin, along with some key features and benefits.

1) Construction Sensory Bin: This sensory bin allows kids to engage in imaginative play as they build, scoop, and load materials in a miniature construction site. It promotes fine motor skills, creativity, and problem-solving [[2]].

2) Farm Sensory Bin: With this sensory bin, children can pretend to take care of farm animals, feed them, and drive a tractor. It encourages imaginative play, animal recognition, and language development [[3]].

3) Dinosaur Sensory Bin: Kids can have a roaring good time with this sensory bin by hatching baby dinosaurs, making a volcano explode, and stomping dinosaurs through beans. It promotes fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and imaginative play [[4]].

4) Fairy Sensory Bin: This sensory bin allows children to create their own fairy garden with mushrooms, rocks, flowers, and creatures. It stimulates imaginative play, creativity, and fine motor skills [[5]].

5) Space Sensory Bin: Kids can explore outer space with this sensory bin by playing with astronauts, rockets, stars, and rocks. It promotes imaginative play, spatial awareness, and fine motor skills [[6]].

6) Car Wash Sensory Bin: This sensory bin offers a simple water play experience where kids can wash toy cars. It is an easy and engaging sensory activity that promotes fine motor skills and sensory exploration [[7]].

7) Forest Sensory Bin: Filled with natural items like pinecones, sticks, rocks, acorns, and wood slices, this sensory bin provides a sensory experience with a woodland theme. It encourages sensory exploration, creativity, and fine motor skills [[8]].

8) Alphabet Soup Sensory Bin: In this sensory bin, children can serve up bowls of alphabet letters, combining learning with fun. It promotes letter recognition, language development, and fine motor skills [[9]].

9) Fake Snow Sensory Bin: This sensory bin brings the fun of winter snow indoors with a simple 2-ingredient fake snow recipe. It provides a tactile sensory experience and encourages imaginative play [[10]].

10) Arctic Igloo Sensory Bin: Kids can create igloos and engage in Arctic-themed imaginative play with this sensory bin. It promotes fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and creativity [[11]].

11) Snowman Sensory Bin: This sensory bin allows children to build their own snowman using materials like dry rice, cotton balls, ribbons, and more. It provides a tactile sensory experience and encourages imaginative play [[12]].

12) Hot Chocolate Sensory Bin: Kids can serve up cups of hot cocoa with pretend marshmallows in this sensory bin. It promotes fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and imaginative play [[13]].

13) Valentine's Day Chocolate Box Sensory Bin: This sensory bin offers a lovely February-themed sensory play experience where kids can scoop and sort pretend chocolates. It encourages fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and imaginative play [[14]].

14) St. Patrick's Day Color Sorting Sensory Bin: With vibrant colors and rainbow pom poms, this sensory bin allows children to engage in color sorting and sensory play. It promotes color recognition, fine motor skills, and sensory exploration [[15]].

15) Easter Color Sorting Sensory Bin: This sensory bin features bright colors, flowers, and Easter eggs for children to sort by color. It also provides opportunities for hiding and finding objects in the grass, promoting fine motor skills and sensory exploration [[16]].

16) Insects Sensory Bin: This sensory bin introduces children to the world of bugs through digging, hiding insects, and creative play. It promotes fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and knowledge about insects [[17]].

17) Garden Sensory Bin: Kids can pretend to plant seeds, pot flowers, water the garden, and harvest vegetables in this sensory bin. It encourages fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and knowledge about gardening [[18]].

18) Ocean Sensory Bin: Dive under the sea with this sensory bin, where children can scoop, pour, and explore various ocean-themed items. It promotes fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and imaginative play [[19]].

19) Beach Sensory Bin: This sensory bin allows children to create a beach scene using their favorite characters, sea shells, and colored rice. It encourages imaginative play, fine motor skills, and sensory exploration [[20]].

20) Moon Sand Sensory Bin: Moon sand, also known as cloud dough, is a versatile sensory bin filler. Children can scoop, stir, and explore its texture. It promotes fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and imaginative play [[21]].

21) Ice Cream Sensory Bin: This sensory bin transforms moon sand into a pretend ice cream shop, providing a fun and messy play experience. It promotes fine motor skills, imaginative play, and sensory exploration [[22]].

22) 4th of July Sensory Bin: With a patriotic theme, this sensory bin allows children to create festive cakes and cupcakes using moon sand. It promotes fine motor skills, imaginative play, and sensory exploration [[23]].

23) Colored Rice Sensory Play: Colored rice is a versatile sensory bin filler that offers vibrant colors and a tactile experience. It promotes fine motor skills, sensory exploration, and imaginative play [[24]].

24) Fall Sensory Bin: This sensory bin brings the colors of fall into a simple sensory experience, encouraging imaginative play and sensory exploration [[25]].

25) Apple Pie Sensory Bin: With this sensory bin, children can pour, stir, and create mini apple pies, promoting fine motor skills and sensory exploration [[26]].

26) Halloween Sensory Bin: Kids can stir up green concoctions in cauldrons, add spooky creatures, and engage in imaginative play with this Halloween-themed sensory bin [[27]].

27) Thanksgiving Pie Sensory Bin: This sensory bin allows children to pretend to bake their own pies, promoting fine motor skills, imaginative play, and sensory exploration [[28]].

28) Christmas Sensory Bin: Kids can decorate their own mini Christmas tree and engage in fine motor skills practice with this sensory bin [[29]].

Conclusion

Sensory play is a valuable and enjoyable way for children to learn and develop various skills. The sensory bin ideas mentioned in the article provide a wide range of engaging and educational experiences for children. Whether it's exploring different textures, engaging in imaginative play, or developing fine motor skills, sensory play offers numerous benefits for children's development. So go ahead and try out these sensory bin ideas to spark creativity, promote learning, and keep kids engaged and entertained for hours!

28 Incredible Sensory Bin Ideas for Preschoolers - Simply Full of Delight (2024)
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