Sensory Play includes any activities that include your child’s senses: touch, smell, taste, sight, hearing and can also include movement & balance.
It encourages your child to use scientific processes while they play, create, investigate & explore.
Create Sensory Bottles with water, oil & various objects to shake & observe.
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup water
- ¼ cup salt
- 1 tbsp. cream of tartar
- 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 1 pkg JellO (optional for colour/smell)
Mix all the ingredients together on low over the stove. Stir frequently. Once the dough starts to gather together into a ball & does not stick to your fingers, then you can remove from the heat. Let cool for a minute & knead together. Store in an airtight container. Supply your child with cookie cutters, play scissors, rollers & assorted kitchen tools to allow them to create & learn
Scented Sensory Tray
This sensory experience can be created with sand, cornmeal, rice, or salt. You can even hid a picture or coloured paper underneath for a surprise.
For an additional element, add various scents to the bag such as citrus, vanilla, peppermint, lavender or a package of Jell O.
The trays can be used for practicing letters, words, your child’s name or drawing pictures with long strays or pencils
Hair Roller Sensory Basket
A bin or basket can be filled with an assortment of Velcro hair rollers This tactile experience is a sensory invitation for your child to build with, explore, sort, count & be creative
Two Ingredient Moon Sand
- 8 cups flour
- 1 cup baby oil
Measure into a large bowl & mix well.
Add this mixture to a shallow bin by using measuring spoons, measuring cups, straws, spoons, etc. Your child can build, scoop & measure with this soft sand.
Provide your child with a tray, shaving cream & various drops of food colouring. Colour mixing is explored by combining the colours together. To further continue the play, blocks can be added to create towers & structures, using the shaving cream as “glue” or “mortar” or even use it to create art!
Pine boughs, twigs, pine cones & leaves are terrific sensory tools for painting. Provide your child with various items, washable paint & easel paper for them to be able to explore using their senses to create a masterpiece
Loose Parts Play
Set up a Loose Parts experience with assorted items (see below) for your child to sort or create with. This invitation for learning has endless opportunities for counting, fine motor
development & creative expression.
Ideas for Loose Parts Materials
- Cotton balls
- Pom poms
- Silk flowers
- Dry pasta
- Popsicle Sticks
- Plastic Eggs
- Pipe Cleaners
Mega Block Ice Painting
Using Mega Blocks, fill with water & a few drops of food colouring, then freeze. Once frozen, provide your child with paper & the cold coloured squares to paint with & explore as the ice melts onto their paper No Mega Blocks? Use an ice cube tray with popsicle sticks as handles