Roman Numerals Math Craft

By on Sunday, August 30, 2015 1 Comment so far
I've been learning how to write and read Roman Numerals larger than 20 simply because my five year old decided that he wanted to learn Roman Numerals this summer. Of course, he had Roman Numerals mastered right away due to his hypernumeracy, but we still did a variety of activities to reinforce his (and perhaps my own?) knowledge of the concept. So we combined math and art to create this fine motor Roman Numerals flashcards craft. It was also a great cooperative craft for my two boys to work on together. And bonus, it encouraged turn taking, which I will explain how shortly.

Homemade Roman Numerals flashcards with washi tape - a fine motor math craft for kids from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

For this craft, we used:


Combine math and art with these kid-made Roman Numerals flashcards - a perfect way to work on fine motor skills while practicing math! from And Next Comes L

I made the first card to show the boys what we would be making. When J saw the card, he instantly lit up! He was so excited to make some cards of his own. He quickly declared that he would make II and instructed his three year old brother K to work on III. As you can see, cutting, peeling, and placing the washi tape on the cards are great ways to work on fine motor skills.


Fine motor math craft for kids from And Next Comes L

Fine motor math craft for kids from And Next Comes L

Fine motor math craft for kids from And Next Comes L

The boys continued to take turns, alternating the Roman Numerals that they were creating, all the way up to 20. I'm sure that if the cards were bigger (to allow for more tape to fit) that J would have gone all the way up to 100 or higher. After all, it was a package of 100 index cards so it only made sense to make them all into Roman Numeral flashcards.
  
Combine math and art with these kid-made Roman Numerals flashcards - a perfect way to work on fine motor skills while practicing math! from And Next Comes L

These simple homemade flashcards would be cute to hang in J's bedroom, but, instead, we will be using them for a variety of other math activities in the future.

Here are some other fun ways to work on Roman Numerals:


Combine math and art with these kid-made Roman Numerals flashcards - a perfect way to work on fine motor skills while practicing math! from And Next Comes L
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Art Gallery Small World {Pretend Play on the Light Table}

By on Tuesday, August 25, 2015 Be the first to comment!
Using the light table for small world pretend play can expand the sensory experience for kids. Take the outer space small world and the arctic small world for example. The light simply transforms the small worlds. I think they look more magical! So when I signed up for letter X for the Small World Pretend Play Ideas from A to Z series, I just knew that I had to try another small world on the light table. So I picked X for exhibit (focusing on the letter X sound here obviously), as in an art gallery exhibit. The result? A really cool art gallery small world that uses some of my mom's real artwork.

Art gallery small world sensory play - a cute pretend play idea for kids on the light table from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

For this small world, I used:


I set up the art gallery by making a LEGO bench and decorating the gallery with some fake plants. I then used the wooden clothespins to hold up the art slides for the art exhibit. Then I set up the playmobil people to face the artwork.

Small world sensory play for kids on the light table inspired by an art gallery from And Next Comes L

My mom is a ceramic artist so she has done numerous exhibitions over the years. That means she has accumulated a whole bunch of slides of her artwork from years ago. She lent them to us a couple of years ago so that the boys could use them on the light table. So it's really neat to show the boys the art and tell them that my mom made the actual art pieces in the pictures.

Small world sensory play for kids on the light table inspired by an art gallery from And Next Comes L

I don't think we've ever taken the boys to an art gallery before, but we have certainly been to museums and looked at exhibits. So I played alongside them to model some art gallery type behavior. We looked at the artwork and discussed what we saw. Then we also talked about how the people could purchase the artwork if they wanted. Bonus: when you flipped our slides over, they had red dot stickers to mark them as sold. They had the red dot stickers because the actual sculptures featured in the slides were sold in real life. So the boys would discuss prices for the items and then flip the slides if one of the people bought the artwork.

A crocodile also crashed the art gallery, courtesy of my three year old. But that's okay, he ended up outbidding the lovely lady in pink on a particularly nice red cat sculpture. He ended up purchasing the artwork for like $1000 or something. Who knew crocodiles liked art so much!

Art gallery small world sensory play - a cute pretend play idea for kids on the light table from And Next Comes L

This post is part of the Small World Pretend Play Ideas from A to Z series hosted by Still Playing School. I did A is for alligator with this alligator themed small world and M is for Mario Kart with this Rainbow Road small world.

Small world pretend play ideas from A to Z

Art gallery small world sensory play - a cute pretend play idea for kids on the light table from And Next Comes L
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Pumpkin & Acorn Sensory Soup {Water Sensory Play}

By on Thursday, August 20, 2015 Be the first to comment!
There's just something about playing with water. My kids cannot get enough of it. So simple water sensory bins like this fall inspired pumpkin and acorn sensory soup are our go-to boredom busting activities. It requires no prep to set up, but this sensory bin encourages lots of fine motor skills and pretend play. It's also a lovely way to explore the colors of fall.

Fall sensory bin idea for kids using pumpkins, acorns, and water from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

For this fall inspired sensory soup, we used:

  • Water
  • Acrylic pumpkins and acorns - You can find it at the dollar store and Michaels.
  • Bowl
  • Kitchen utensils: large spoon, ladle, and whisk, but you can include measuring cups, measuring spoons, and more!

Like all of our sensory soups, we simply just dump the materials into a large plastic bin and it's ready for playing. My boys particularly enjoy scooping up all the water that they can using the large spoon and ladle. They usually aim to fill up the bowl that I supply, simply so they can dump out all of the water. Scoop and dump. Scoop and dump. And repeat.

Pumpkin & acorn sensory soup - a simple water sensory activity that encourages fine motor skills from And Next Comes L

Fall sensory bin idea for kids using pumpkins, acorns, and water from And Next Comes L

Pumpkin & acorn sensory soup: simple fine motor sensory bin idea for kids from And Next Comes L

Look at all the bubbles!

Pumpkin & acorn sensory soup: simple fine motor sensory bin idea for kids from And Next Comes L

Try out these other fall inspired sensory soup ideas:


Pumpkin & acorn sensory soup - a simple water sensory activity that encourages fine motor skills from And Next Comes L
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Roman Numerals on the Light Table

By on Wednesday, August 19, 2015 Be the first to comment!
My son's interest in Roman Numerals shows no signs in slowing down any time soon. I also already mentioned that lots of math activities based on Roman Numerals were going to appear on the blog (don't say I didn't warn you!), so here's a quick, no prep way to practice Roman Numerals on the light table.

Making Roman Numerals on the light table: hands-on math activity for kids from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

I have certainly had to brush on my Roman Numerals with my five year old son's recent interest in the topic, but thankfully he's willing to reteach me the ones I don't remember. Or at least tell me loudly when I get a number wrong! I recently set out this simple math light table invitation for him and challenged him to make specific Roman Numerals and he loved it!

To make Roman Numerals on the light table, we used translucent cocktail stirrers (similar to these). As you can see, they work perfectly for making Xs, Is, Vs, and Ls.

Making Roman Numerals on the light table: hands-on math activity for kids from And Next Comes L

In J's typical fashion, he started with I and went up one number at a time until he got tired of the activity. I think he finally took a break around number 50 or so.

Roman Numerals math on the light table from And Next Comes L

Roman Numerals math on the light table from And Next Comes L

Roman Numerals math on the light table from And Next Comes L

There's lots of other fun ways to learn and practice Roman Numerals. Be sure to try:


Making Roman Numerals on the light table: hands-on math activity for kids from And Next Comes L
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LEGO Stamped Roman Numerals

By on Tuesday, August 18, 2015 Be the first to comment!
Roman numerals are what my five year old son is currently interested in. And like anything he becomes interested in, he picks it up instantly. However, I like to reinforce the concepts regardless. Plus, I like to push him outside his sensory comfort zones from time to time. Painting has been outside his comfort zone for a couple of years now, so I would like to get him used to the texture and feel of paint again. The result? We combined math and art into this simple LEGO stamped Roman numerals activity.

LEGO stamped Roman numerals: Math idea for kids to learn about Roman numerals from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

This activity combines math and art and uses only the following materials:


The LEGO bricks worked perfectly for stamping the different Roman numerals. Since the bricks are small, J's fingers ended up touching the paint as he dipped. I could tell he was still slightly uncomfortable with the feel of the paint on his fingers, which is so strange because as a toddler, he loved to finger paint. However, since then, he hasn't really enjoyed painting. But stamp painting Roman numerals? That ended up being something he totally enjoyed! Even if he had to promptly wash his hands when he was done...

Learning about Roman numerals by stamping with LEGO - fun math art for kids from And Next Comes L

Learning about Roman numerals by stamping with LEGO - fun math art for kids from And Next Comes L

Learning about Roman numerals by stamping with LEGO - fun math art for kids from And Next Comes L

Love the way these Roman numeral prints turned out!

Learning about Roman numerals by stamping with LEGO - fun math art for kids from And Next Comes L

We also combined LEGO with Roman numerals for another activity! Try this LEGO math tray to practice sequencing Roman numerals.

LEGO stamped Roman numerals: Math idea for kids to learn about Roman numerals from And Next Comes L
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50 More Non-Food Sensory Bin Fillers {Free Printable List}

By on Monday, August 17, 2015 Be the first to comment!
The benefits of sensory play for kids are aplenty. However, many parents and educators are opposed to using food for sensory play. That's why I have already compiled a thorough list of 50 non-food sensory bin fillers to try with kids, but I simply couldn't stop there. There's even more options to consider! So here are 50 MORE non-food sensory bin fillers for kids. Again, I've included a free printable list for your reference. So from sponges to pool noodles to lotion, this list of sensory materials is going to have you reconsidering using food for sensory play. Or at least it will have you thinking outside the (sensory) box.

50 more non-food-sensory bin fillers to try with kids with free printable list and 100 example sensory bin ideas that don't use food! from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

1. Cut up sponges or shaped sponges

Sponges are a great sensory bin filler because they come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and textures. Either cut them up into little blocks or shapes or try shaped sponges like these alphabet sponges.




Soft and fluffy, baby powder would make a great, although messy, sensory bin filler. 


3. Lace

Fabric based sensory bins are great for babies or small toddlers, so try using lace instead.



These are fun to stretch, pull, twist, throw, and more. You can usually find them in the dollar store.




Wood chips are an interesting hard, rough texture for little hands to explore. They work great for any kind of forest, farm, or construction type sensory bin.



6. Tree bark

Another great rough texture for kids to play and explore with. Bark is lovely paired with moss in a sensory bin.


7. Broken crayons

Who doesn't have lots of broken crayons kicking around the house? Well, try them as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Monster Mash Small World



I remember silly string being so much fun as kid so I think it would be a lot of fun as a sensory bin filler.


9. Slime

Slime would make a great sensory bin filler for any kind of oozy swamp or sewer like sensory bin. Ninja Turtles small world with slime is the first thing that comes to my mind!




Kids loooooove bubble wrap. Okay, adults love popping the stuff too, so why not try it as a sensory bin filler. It's a great way to recycle and work on fine motor skills.




One of my favorite sensory bin fillers to use is acrylic vase fillers. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and textures and there is always seasonal themed fillers in Michaels and dollar stores during holiday seasons.




The easiest way to encourage literacy through sensory play is to create a sensory bin using plastic alphabet magnets or beads as the base.



13. Milk jug lids

Recycle those lids and add them to your sensory stash! Try writing sight words or letters or math equations on the lids to sneak in some extra learning.



14. Cut up pipe cleaners

The fuzzy texture of pipe cleaners is great for a sensory bin filler, but kids will also love exploring the magnetic properties of the pipe cleaners as they play.



15. Pinecones

Another great natural material to use in sensory bins is pinecones. They have such an interesting texture!




You can easily whip up a sparkly, crinkly sensory bin using gift bows. They work great for Christmas or birthday themed sensory bin fillers.




Squishy and cool, water balloons are a fun sensory bin filler for kids. You can also write sight words, math equations, letters, etc. on the balloons to sneaky in some extra learning.




You can find all sorts of foam shapes, letters, or numbers. They also come in a variety of sizes, colors, and textures, making them an awesome sensory bin filler. Add some water for some extra fun!




Try bingo chips in a sensory bin! They can be a lot of fun for kids to try and scoop up, especially in water.




You can usually buy a bag of makeup sponges at the dollar store, making them a pretty frugal sensory bin filler.


21. Costume jewelry

Raid your dress up bin for some costume jewelry and try it as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Thrift Store Sensory Bin | Mardi Gras Sensory bin (just skip the rice)


22. Moss

Natural materials always make a great sensory bin filler because they're usually plentiful and are always free. Moss would be wonderful for a rainforest sensory bin or a fairy small world, for example.



23. Lotion

The smooth, creamy texture of lotion, paired with a scent and/or color, can make for a lovely, but messy, sensory bin filler.


24. Sawdust

I love the smell of sawdust! It also feels like no other texture.

Ideas to try: Sawdust Sensory Bin



You can find all sorts of mini erasers, especially at the dollar store. Grab some seasonal ones to make quick and easy holiday themed sensory bins.




Stock up on some dollar store toothpaste and let the kids explore the texture. Kids will love to help squeeze the toothpaste out of the tube and into the sensory bin.



27. Clay

Try some colorful modeling clay, air dry clay, or try some more natural clay as a sensory bin filler. It's a great way to encourage fine motor skills, stamping, print making, and more!



28. Silly putty

Silly putty is a lot of fun to play with and kids will love it as part of a sensory bin.




Paper clips are a great sensory bin filler for exploring magnetic properties and working on fine motor skills (by linking the clips together).




A perfect first sensory bin filler for babies would be those plastic baby links. They come in a variety of colors and textures.



31. Cut up pool noodles

Try cutting up some pool noodles and filling a sensory bin with them. Sneak in some literacy learning by writing some sight words or letters on the pool noodles.



32. Plastic leis

Either the flower kind or the ruffled kind would work great in a sensory bin.



33. Puzzle pieces

Perhaps you have some old puzzles that are missing some pieces? Well, upcycle them into a sensory bin filler.



34. Confetti

Confetti is another fun sensory bin item. It is one that I could foresee my children throwing everywhere though, so be prepared!




Look no further than your kitchen for an easy sensory bin filler. Those pot scrubbers have such a unique texture!



36. Balls of tin foil

Crumble up some tin foil and fill up a sensory bin with them. Or wrap up some objects in tin foil and let the kids work on fine motor skills as they unwrap the little "presents."



37. Marbles

The smooth, cool texture of round marbles is appealing to a lot of kids. The kids will love seeing them roll around in a sensory bin.



38. Cut up cardboard tubes or toilet paper rolls

I hoard cardboard tubes like crazy. I never ever do anything with them it seems, but they would be awesome in a sensory bin!



39. Sequins or large glitter

Want a little sparkle? A little glam? Some glitz? Try sequins or large glitter as a sensory bin filler.




Plastic eggs are not just for Easter (at least in my mind). Fill up a plastic bin with them and let the kids have fun opening and closing them.



41. Paint

Try using either liquid paint or paint powder as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Soap Painting Sensory Bin | Sensory Paint Bin (could use washable paint instead)



Styrofoam balls come in a variety of sizes and would make a great filler for winter themed sensory bins.




Fill a bin with glow in the dark stars, turn off the lights, and let the kids' eyes lead the way.


44. Dandelions

Put those dandelions to good use! Fill up a bin and let the kids play.



45. Chalk dust

Grate up some chalk and let the kids get messy (and dusty!) with chalk dust.




My kids love googly eyes so I'm positive they would love a googly eyes sensory bin. Grab a variety of sizes and colors for some extra silliness.



47. Clean mud

Whip up a bath of clean mud for your next sensory bin!

Ideas to try: Fairy Mud | Ghost Mud | Rainbow Clean Mud



Floam is crazy fun because of those little foam balls. What will you pair with floam?




Try using reusable plastic ice cubes, either chilled or unchilled, for your next sensory bin filler. Kids will love stacking and sorting them. They also come in a variety of shapes and sizes, like these fruit ones.



50. Pouch cap lids

We have never used any of those pouch cap products, but I know a lot of families do. And, as a result, I know they have collected a lot of lids over time. Put them to good use in a sensory bin!

Ideas to try: Pouch Caps Sensory Bin
For even more suggestions, check out these amazing books that focus on using non-food items for sensory play! Or check out the original 50 non-food sensory bin filler printable list!

Continue reading >>

50 Non-Food Sensory Bin Fillers {Free Printable List}

By on Sunday, August 16, 2015 2 Comments so far
We like to use a variety of sensory bin fillers at our house, including both food and non-food items. However, I know there are a lot of people who prefer not to use food in their sensory bins. So I have compiled 50 non-food sensory bin fillers to try with your kids, including example sensory bin ideas for each single item. And to make your life even simpler, I've included a free printable list of all 50 sensory bin fillers. That way you can reference it when you want to create a sensory bin of your own. The possibilities are endless!

50 non-food-sensory bin fillers to try with kids with free printable list and over 125 example sensory bin ideas that don't use food! from And Next Comes L

This post contains affiliate links.

1. Pom poms

Fuzzy, sparkly, small, large...the possibilities are endless, but kids will love the soft texture of pom poms and they're great for scooping and practicing fine motor skills.

Ideas to try: Pom Pom Sensory Bin Ideas | Counting Pom Poms Sensory Bin | Pom Pom Sensory Bin


2. Cotton balls

Another great soft and fuzzy texture for kids to explore. You can also add color or scents to the cotton balls to enhance the sensory experience.



3. Straw or hay

Straw and hay is an interesting and unique texture for kids to explore.



4. Packing peanuts

An awesome sensory bin filler is to reuse all those packing peanuts you might get from parcels. You can also build with them if you add toothpicks or skewers to the mix!


5. Epsom salts

Another interesting dry texture, epsom salts can also be dyed or scented with essential oils. Epsom salts also make great writing trays for kids to practice handwriting skills!

Ideas to try: Gold & Silver Epsom Salts | Writing Tray on Light Table | Rainbow Epsom Salts | Calming Epsom Salt Sensory Play


6. Water

What kid doesn't love playing with water? Add some color or some glitter or even some scents to boost the sensory experience. 

Ideas to try: 20 Water Sensory Soups


7. Shredded paper

Shredded paper is ridiculously fun for kids to play with! Recycling for the win.

Ideas to try: Music Themed Sensory Bin | Easter Sensory Bin | Winter Sensory Bin with Paper Pulp | Life Sized Easter Sensory Bin


8. Grass (fake or real)

Use fresh grass clippings as a base for a farm sensory bin or use the plastic Easter grass for an easy Easter sensory bin filler. Don't feel limited to farm or Easter bins as there are lots of other ways to try grass as a sensory bin filler!


9. Leaves (fake or real)

Fall is the perfect time to use leaves as a sensory bin filler since they're so colorful.


10. Water beads

If you haven't tried water beads before, then you should! They're squishy, slimy, bouncy balls of fun. The giant water beads are lots of fun too! 


11. Sand

You can try colored sand or regular sand as a sensory bin filler. It's a perfect base for an ocean themed sensory bin!

Ideas to try: Spring Craft Sand Sensory Bin | Sand & Rock Sensory Box | Digging for Shark Tooth Fossils Sensory Bin


12. Kinetic sand

It's no secret we love kinetic sand. If your kids don't enjoy the texture of sand, then they will likely prefer this alternative. It doesn't stick to hands like sand does. Plus, it can be molded and shaped like play dough.

Ideas to try: 35 Kinetic Sand Activities | Kinetic Sand Activities


13. Aquarium gravel

These colorful little rocks are a neat texture for kids to explore.

Ideas to try: Teeny Tiny Ocean Small World Activity Bin | Pet Frog Sensory Bin | Sorting Shapes Sensory Bin | Space Themed Sensory Tub


14. Rocks 

My boys love playing with rocks! So go on a scavenger hunt, collect some rocks, and make a sensory bin with them.

Ideas to try: Simple Rock Sensory Bin | Rock Sensory Bin | Construction Themed Rock Sensory Bin


15. Glass stones

These round, flat marbles are so versatile. They're especially great for sensory bins on the light table. They have a cool, smooth texture that my kids absolutely love.

Ideas to try: Rainbow Stone Soup | St. Patrick's Day Sensory Bin | Watermelon Soap Foam


16. Buttons

Buttons come in a variety of colors, shapes, sizes, and textures, making them a great sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Buttons Soup | Button Sensory Bin | Buttons & Eggs | Button Water Play


17. Ice 

Brrrr! Ice is a great sensory filler, especially for winter themed sensory bins.

Ideas to try: Arctic Small World Sensory Bin | Rainbow Ice Ball Sensory Bin | Arctic Ice Sensory Bin | Rainbow Ice


18. Coins (fake or real) 

My three year old loves coins. He used to hoard real coins in his pockets all the time. Try using them in a sensory bin!

Ideas to try: Piggy Bank Coins Sensory Bin | St. Patrick's Day Sensory Bin


19. Shaving cream

Looking for something messy and squishy? Try shaving cream! It's also great for handwriting and mark-making practice.

Ideas to try: Kool Aid & Shaving Cream | Shaving Cream & Water Beads | Starfish & Sand Dollar Shaving Cream Dig | Rainbow Shaving Cream Dig


20. Play dough

My kids love play dough! Play dough is a great sensory bin filler, especially for small worlds, because you can make it any color and/or scent you choose.

Ideas to try: Play Dough Sensory Mud | Snow Play Dough Bin | Play Dough Ocean Small World Sensory Play


21. Feathers 

Feathers are a great soft texture for kids to explore and they come in a variety of colors, shapes, and textures.

Ideas to try: Rainbow Feathers Sensory Bin | Thanksgiving Sensory Bin | Gold at the End of the Rainbow Sensory Bin


22. Dirt

Most kids love to dig in the dirt, so why wouldn't you include it in a sensory bin?

Ideas to try: Dirt Sensory Bin | Garden Sensory Bin | Spring Garden Sensory Bin


23. Snow

We get a lot of snow here, but it's also fun to bring inside to explore with.

Ideas to try: Arctic Small World Sensory Bin | Real Snow Sensory Bin | Snow Painting Sensory Bin


24. Mud

Messy, glorious mud. My youngest loves to play in mud!

Ideas to try: Build Your Own Mud Pond


25. Soap shavings

Soap comes in a variety of colors and scents, but try grating or shaving it with a vegetable peeler and using it as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Fairy Mud | Ghost Mud | Rainbow Clean Mud


26. Soap foam 

Goodness, we love soap foam here! It's easy to make, versatile, and easy to clean up. You definitely must try soap foam!

Ideas to try: 25 Soap Foam Sensory Activities


27. Fabric scraps

The perfect first sensory bin filler for babies or small toddlers is fabric scraps. Provide a variety of fabric types and colors to keep it really interesting for small hands.

Ideas to try: Fabric Scraps Sensory Box for Baby | Cloth Napkin Sensory Bin | Fabric Scraps Sensory Bin


28. Baby oil

As an alternative to using other liquids, try baby oil!

Ideas to try: DIY Sensory Bottles with Baby Oil | Ice, Baby Oil, & Glitter


29. Tinsel

Before you pack up all that tinsel after Christmas, try it in a sensory bin. It's really a unique and sparkly texture for kids to explore.

Ideas to try: St. Patrick's Day Sensory Bin | Christmas Sensory Bin | Valentine's Day Sensory Bin


30. Ribbon

You can either use fabric ribbon or curling ribbon as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Letter R Sensory Bin | Ribbon Sensory Bin | Ribbons & Bells Sensory Bin


31. Raffia

Raffia is what I like to call craft straw or hay, but it provides a really cool texture for sensory bins.

Ideas to try: Letter R Sensory Bin | Fall Sensory Bin | Farm Sensory Bin


32. Flower petals (fake or real) 

Have a flower bouquet that's about to be tossed out? Save it and try it as a sensory bin filler. Fake flower petals work great too!

Ideas to try: Fine Motor Flowers Sensory Bin | Rose Petal Sensory Bin | Flower Sensory Soup | Silk Flowers Sensory Bins


33. Beads

Beads come in all sorts of shapes and colors! Try wood beads, perler beads, pony beads, or plastic beads. The possibilities are endless!

Ideas to try: Wood Bead Sensory Bin | Pony Beads Sensory Bin | Beads & Stones Sensory Bin | Beads Sensory Bin


34. Foam bits or blocks 

Kids seem to enjoy the texture of foam so it makes sense to try it as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Foam Bits Sensory Bin | Foam Block Building Sensory Bin | Foam Blocks Quiet Box | Square Themed Sensory Bin with Foam Blocks


35. Corks

Save all those wine corks and fill up a sensory bin with them! Kids will love to stack and build with them.

Ideas to try: Cork Sail Boat Sensory Bin | Corks Sensory Bin


36. Seashells

Seashells have such a great variety of textures: bumpy, pointy, smooth, ridged, etc. They make a great sensory bin filler!

Ideas to try: Seashells Sensory Bin | Seashells & Shaving Cream


37. Aloe vera gel

Soft and squishy, aloe vera gel makes for a really fun and messy sensory experience. Plus, it's great for the kids' skin!

Ideas to try: Earth Inspired Sensory Bin | Slimy Aloe Vera Sensory Play for Babies | Arctic Penguin Habitat Bin


38. Cut up straws 

Get the kids to work on fine motor skills by helping cut up some straws. The cut up straws provide a really unique sensory experience when used as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: Plastic Straw Sensory Bin | Drinking Straw Sensory Tub | Straw Spring Sensory Bin | Halloween Sensory Bin with Straws


39. Cotton batting

Batting is a great substitute for fake snow in a sensory bin. Kids will love the soft, fluffy texture.

Ideas to try: Winter Theme Sensory Bin | Polar Bear Sensory Bin | Weather Sensory Bin


40. Tissue paper

If you recently had a birthday party or celebrated some other gift giving occasion, save the tissue paper for a sensory bin filler. It's simple and fun, but the kids will love ripping and tearing it as they play!

Ideas to try: Tissue Paper Sensory Bin | Ghost Sensory Bin | Airplane Sensory Bin | Tissue Paper Squares Sensory Bin | Tissue Paper Sensory Box


41. Crepe paper or streamers

Similar to tissue paper, kids will love being able to rip and tear the crepe paper.

Ideas to try: Wild Kratts Sensory Bin


42. Play silks or scarves

Another great sensory filler for babies and small toddlers who are just starting to explore sensory bins. So many wonderful colors and textures to explore!

Ideas to try: Spring Time Sensory Basket for Toddlers | Rainbow Scarves Discovery Box | Play Silks & Textured Balls Sensory Bin


43. Polyfill pellets 

Here's another fun sensory bin filler. Kids will have a blast scooping and pouring the pellets.

Ideas to try: Glowing Letter Recognition Sensory Bin | Christmas Ornament Sensory Play | Magnetic Christmas Sensory Bin


44. Balls 

From ping pong balls to spiky balls to ball pit balls, you can easily make a fun sensory bin using just balls. Or try making a full-body sensory bin by doing a ball pit! Balls make a great first sensory bin filler for babies and small toddlers!

Ideas to try: Sensory Ball Pit for Baby | Snowman Sensory Bin | Exploring Textures Through Balls Sensory Bin


45. LEGO

Whether you use the small bricks or the DUPLO bricks, LEGO is a great texture to explore what with its hard and bumpy edges.

Ideas to try: LEGO Sensory Soup | LEGO Sensory Bin


46. Sticks

My kids love sticks! So let your kids go collect some sticks and use them to fill up a sensory bin.

Ideas to try: Sticks Sensory Bin | Build an Apple Tree Sensory Bin | Cherry Blossom Tree Sensory Bin


47. Wool roving

Soft and fluffy, wool roving would be a lovely sensory bin filler. You can even get it in a variety of colors.

Ideas to try: Make a Lorax Themed Bin with these Truffula Trees


48. Yarn or string 

You can find a variety of textures, colors, and sizes of yarn or string so they work nicely as a sensory bin filler.

Ideas to try: 4 Yarn Sensory Bins | Yarn Sensory Bin | Christmas Light Sensory Bin | Small World Stables


49. Jingle bells

Add a little sound to your sensory bins by adding jingle bells.

Ideas to try: Jingle Bells & Cookie Cutters | Jingle Bell Sensory Bin | Jingle Bell Soup | Ribbons & Bells Sensory Bin


50. Rubber bands or loom bands

My kids are always drawn to rubber bands and they would love to play with a sensory bin filled with them.

Ideas to try: Sensory Bag with Loom Bands & Glitter | Rubber Loom Bands in a Discovery Bottle | Rainbow Loom Sensory Bottle


50 non-food sensory bin fillers to try with kids {free printable} from And Next Comes L

For even more suggestions, check out these amazing books that focus on using non-food items for sensory play! Or here are 50 more non-food sensory bin fillers to try!

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