Here at Adventures of Adam we love sensory bins. They are a great way of getting the benefits of sensory play, such as cognitive, language and physical development, with no mess involved. As the resources are kept in a small container, cleaning up afterwards is quick. Food makes a great base for a sensory bin. Most items are already in your kitchen cupboard making it a cost effective play activity.
Here are our top 10 sensory bins using food:
Everything in this sensory bin is edible – even the dinosaurs! Broken rice cakes, biscuits and bread sticks form the sensory bin base and raw broccoli, raisins, apricots and apple puree were used to decorate the Jurassic themed bin. Melted chocolate created a mud pool. A volcano was made by mixing drinking chocolate powder, flour and warm water to form a dough and baked beans were used as molten lava. A perfect activity if you have a toddler who likes to put everything into their mouth.
A bag of porridge oats and a can of chick peas formed a perfect base for diggers and tractors to transport. Adam spent the activity exploring the two textures, emptying the trucks, mixing the oats around in the water already on the Tuff Spot Tray (affiliate link) and picking out the chick peas into a baking tray
By pouring jelly, water, gelatine, food colouring and coconut milk into drinking straws we created these realistic edible worms. We substituted raisins for mud to form our worm sensory bin.
Smash, or instant potato, was the first messy activity that Adam really enjoyed. He didn’t mind tipping the contents over himself whilst transferring the powder from one container to another. Adding warm water to the Smash created a consistency like playdough.
This sensory bin combined Adam’s two obsessions – transport and letters. One can of Heinz Alphabetti Pasta was all it took. The diggers stopped Adam having to touch the tomato based sauce but he could still move the pasta around to find individual letters.
Using a range of breakfast cereals we formed a sensory bin to celebrate harvest. Shreddies, Weetabix and Cherrios proved to be a great hit with Adam who decided to try and eat these for the first time!
This was our first ever attempt at a sensory activity. Adam wasn’t put off by the texture of the spaghetti and saw it as a ’taking-it-out-and-putting-it-back-in-activity.’ However, Adam’s cousin Beth, saw it as lunch!
Cornflakes are great to stomp in as they make a super crunching sound. They can also be explored with fingers, scoops, kitchen rolls and a milk bottle.
We discovered with this sensory bin that things do not always go to plan. The idea was to melt chocolate to form mud and for small dinosaurs to stomp around the bin. However, as Adam had no previous experience of what a dinosaur was he was less than impressed – as you can tell by his face. Instead of giving up on the activity I quickly swapped the dinosaurs for diggers. Within moments we had a construction sensory bin where Adam could scoop up the chocolate mud and transport it around the bin. Smiles all round!
When I find out of date food at the back of the cupboard my first thought is no longer to throw it out but to think what play activity can the food be turned into. Wheat flakes are great for mark making.
Adventures of Adam has become an official Toys R Us Toyologist. We are having lots of fun testing different toys!