Great Sensory Play Ideas to Keep Kids Busy
October 12, 2015|Posted in: Happy, Healthy, Smart Kids!
My grandson G2 is one of those little guys with a BIG personality! He is gregarious and has an enthusiasm and zest for life that is totally contagious and we have so much fun with him! He enjoys things to the fullest and is a very happy little boy (except when he’s not and then he’s unhappy with just as much gusto)!! G2 is so smart and full of energy that I have to get incredibly creative to keep him busy. Here is a list, with super cute photos, of 13 sensory play activities that have kept him occupied for hours!
Sensory Play Ideas
1. Water Play – A bowl of water and some water toys make for a lot of fun. We usually put a towel under the bowl to sop up splashes and drips. Occasionally there is a tidal wave so I always make sure there are no important papers or such on the counter nearby.
2. Colored Water Play – For this activity I get different sizes of plastic containers and fill them about halfway full with water. Then I add food coloring to make them all different colors. G2 loves to pour and mix them and see what happens when he combines the colors. A towel underneath is a must for this one too.
3. Baking Soda, Food Coloring and Vinegar – The bubbling and fizzing reaction that occurs when you mix vinegar and baking soda can make for some exciting fun. I cover a serving tray with foil to make cleanup easy. Then I drop food coloring in random spots on the foil lined tray and cover them with baking soda. Using a little cup of vinegar and a plastic spoon G2 gets the action going and loves to be surprised with the colors he finds and he has fun watching his experiment bubble and fizz as the they run together and make still more color variations.
4. Mud Pies – Mud Pies, or Mud Soup as G2 has made in the photo here, are a traditional childhood activity. All you need is play clothes, mixing bowls and spoons, mud, water and the great outdoors. Leaves and sticks can make great ingredients or decorations too!
5. Kinetic Sand – This stuff is amazing! It feels moist and Clumps together so that it doesn’t make a mess all over the house. If it spills you can pick up the clumps and all of the little particles cling together. We put ours in a plastic bin with a lid and we added some small small sand toys and cars and motorcycles for a fun sand play experience. This is a sensory play idea that is very popular with my grandkids!
6. Painting – G2 isn’t much for doing things on paper but he loved painting this birdhouse. We used acrylic paint so we made sure he wore a paint shirt so his clothes wouldn’t be stained. You could use washable finger paints if you’re not concerned about the durability of the paint job.
7. Lincoln Logs – Lincoln Logs, Legos (this boy loves him some Legos!!), blocks of any kind, G2 loves to build! Combine the blocks with toy vehicles, animals and people for a rip roaring good time!
8. Snow and/or Ice – During the wintertime when it snows you can go outside and scoop some of the cold white stuff onto a tray, If it’s not wintertime you can just pile a few ice cubes onto the tray. Again add toy vehicles, animals and people, etc. The kids love this sensory play activity!
9. Planting Seeds & Gardening – I love to garden and to my delight, G2 loves to garden with me. This year he grew pumpkins and a giant sunflower! From planting to weeding to harvesting, he loves it all!
10. Catching Insects – Catching insects can be lots of fun! Just provide jars or better yet, little plastic habitats you can buy at the store. G2 likes to gather leaves to feed them and give them names and observe the things they do.
11. Homemade Kool-Aid Play Dough – This play dough is awesome. It sayed moist and pliable in the fridge for a few months! At first I didn’t realize it required cooking and I was disappointed when I did, but after I made it and it turned out so great, I would do it again in a heartbeat! You can find the recipe HERE.
12. Goop aka Ooblek – This stuff is fascinating and will keep the kids busy for hours. It seems to go from a solid to a liquid and back again right in your hands. Be forewarned though it makes a huge mess!! Have the kids wear paint shirts and be prepared to vacuum when they are finished playing! You can find the recipe HERE.
13. Frosting & Decorating Graham Crackers – If there is anything G2 loves more than a messy, ooey gooey play activity, it is a messy, ooey gooey play activity that he can EAT!! I use graham crackers (you can also use saltine crackers), store bought frosting and sprinkles so there is no baking involved and it’s a quick activity to set up! G2 loves to sample the frosting as he decorates and he always saves a plate of his creations to share with his Mommy!
Here are some related products from Amazon that you might like. Just click on the photo or the description to be redirected to Amazon where you can purchase the product.
- Tell It To Me Tuesdays - link up party #38 - F Dean Hackett - Foundational - […] you’ll love Lori’s post from “Love My Big Happy Family”! She shares 13 wonderful sensory play activities that she…