Thursday, October 13, 2011

Sensory Box Fun?

This is from a super-craftsy mom's blog that I keep in my reader for ideas.  This post is on sensory boxes, which sound to me like imagination vitamins!  Most of you know that I am not one to be frilly or go out of the way to do something if it doesn't serve a purpose (even if that purpose is to "be asthetically pleasing" or "to provide a learning activity"), but I'm leaning more towards doing some cooler things with Eowyn now that she's older.  Up to this point, my MO has been to give her simple toys (or natural items) and let her play.  She gets "water play" in her weekly bath, or at the splash park, or in basins in the back yard while I garden.  She has a well-stocked play kitchen and plenty of play baby dolls & accessories.  We take walks and she is encouraged to pick up leaves and grass and rocks and get as dirty as she wants-- we can always wash hands later, right?  All of those were simple, imagination-fostering... and no effort for me. :)

But ...after seeing just how fascinated she was with the water table and sand table at the Brooklyn Children's Museum yesterday, I'm considering going a little out of my way and creating a SIMPLE sensory box she can play with at home... something I could pull out during dinner-prep and let her enjoy in the kitchen (where any spills are easily swept up), perhaps?  Hmmm...

Have any of you done any sort of tactile/sensory boxes?


Anonymous said...

I purchased a large "under bed" bin with a lid at Walmart, filled it with play sand from Lowes, and mixed in sparkly plastic beads. Gave the kids a sand play set (shovel, sifter etc.) and they could dig for buried treasure. You can mix all sorts of things into the sand, and they're all pretty easy to remove with a kitchen strainer. This is definitely a basement (in colder months) or outside toy, because sand does not stay contained! :)

Leslie said...

we did something similar in the under the bed bins you can buy... at costco/sams they have huge 5# bags of pinto beans for $5, so I took one and dumped it in the bin and added the small 5pc set of CAT tractors the boys received for Christmas... they love it and it's easier to clean up than sand... I hate sand :)

Kathy D. said...

Uh, have you met the Dow family ;) Let's see.....some favorites:

cornstarch & water (goop)-- you can put her in the tub with a bin of this. easy-peasy clean-up.

Bin full of dry beans, put in magnetic letters/numbers. I like to do both upper case & lower case so he can put the "buddies" together as he pulls them out. Or I have a letter side on the board & a number side on the board, he must put the letter or number magnet on the appropriate side.

Winter bin with instant snow. BIG eyes here :) Or, you can use cotton balls & large tweezers, but instant snow is SO much fun!

Fall bin with acorns, pumpkins, leaves, etc.

Summer bin with sand, little plastic sea creatures, shovel, cups etc. (I only let him have this one on the deck or in the tub)

little piles of baking soda all around the inside of the bin plus a little bowl of vinegar with a dropper. For even more fun, add a few drops of food coloring here & there before adding vinegar.

Or, if you have a double sink, make one side a massive bubble bonanza & the other side clean water. Give baby dolls (or Buzz in our case ;) ) & let her at it!

If you haven't tried, go there & put "Sensory Box" or "Sensory Bin" in the search box, you'll have ideas coming out of your ears :)

Kathy D.