Easy, Cheap and Fun Sensory Bin Ideas

Your little ones can spend hours playing with these fun sensory bins.

Looking for a way to keep your littles entertained while also engaging them in learning? Sensory bins make learning fun for young kids and can be quite versatile. You can incorporate any theme, holiday or season. Plus, you can make a sensory bin with almost anything!

Dinosaur Archaeology Sensory Bin

Have a dino lover? They will love digging for dinosaurs. Make the cloud dough, then hide the dinosaurs. Give your little paleontologist a brush and have him or her look for the dinosaurs.

Get the tutorial at Busy Toddler.

Shaving Cream Sensory Bin

Your little ones can get creative with shaving cream and paint!  Don’t let the colorful foam go to waste. You can use it to make colorful marbled paper.

Get the tutorial at Fun with Mama.

Ice Cream Sensory Bin

Who doesn’t love ice cream? Kids can pretend to scoop their own ice cream cotton balls into small bowls or ice cream cones. Don’t forget to have them scoop sprinkles (sequins) onto their ice cream creation.

Get the tutorial at Fantastic Fun and Learning.

Ice Sensory Bin

Scoop up the ice in the bin as fast as you can! This would be a great summer activity when the kids need a little cool off from the heat.

Get the tutorial at Twin Mom Refreshed.

Insect Sensory Bin

For some reason, kids are so fascinated by bugs. They’ll love this bug-tastic sensory bin! Grab some black beans (or any beans for that matter) as your pretend dirt, and hide those plastic buggy critters.

Get the tutorial at The OT Toolbox.

Rainbow Pasta Sensory Bin

Who knew spaghetti could be so fun when you include some colors from the rainbow? Don’t worry, food coloring is used, so it’s OK if your child takes a bite while playing.

Get the tutorial at Elated Momma.

Oats & Easter Eggs Sensory Bin

Save those leftover plastic eggs from Easter and use them for your next sensory bin. Toddlers will love the smaller tools to pick up their oats.

Get the tutorial at Happy Toddler Playtime.

Fall Harvest Corn Sensory Bin

Has your child ever been in a corn pit? This is the same exact concept except mini-sized. Have them use the measuring spoons/cups to pour kernels into the truck, and find their favorite farm animals roaming about.

Get the the tutorial at The Resourceful Mama.

Dish Washing Sensory Bin

Make them think chores are a game by introducing them to this sensory bin at an early age. Drop in plastic dishes and other kitchen’s toys with the soapy water.

Get the tutorial at The Homespun Hydrangea.

Pom Pom Fishing Sensory Bin

Using water in sensory bins is an easy option for parents, and it can have some great learning benefits for kids, too. Fill a tub with water and add in mini pom poms. Kids can practice hand-eye coordination by fishing out the poms poms with a tongs or slotted spoon. For a bonus challenge, encourage your kiddo to sort the poms by color. 

Get the tutorial at Modern Homestead Mama. 

Early Bird Gets the Worm Sensory Bin

Use crinkled paper as “nesting material”, then add tiny bird toys and pipe cleaner worms. Kids can play and build nests for their tiny birds while learning about nature and the food chain. Take the nature experience to the next level by adding real bird feathers. 

Get the tutorial at Craftulate.


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Chicago Parent Editorial Team
Chicago Parent Editorial Team
Since 1984, the Chicago Parent editorial team is trained to be the go-to source for Chicagoland families, offering a rich blend of expert advice, compelling stories, and the top local activities for kids. Renowned for their award-winning content, the team of editors and writers are dedicated to enriching family life by connecting parents with the finest resources and experiences our community has to offer.
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