Winter Sensory Bin on the Light Table

By on November 26, 2013
When we were building our light table, I was most excited about making it waterproof so that we could use water, water beads, and other messy materials without worrying about damaging our table.  I was also looking forward to using our light table to add an extra sensory element to sensory bins, something our tiny light box failed to do, at least on a large scale like this.  Well, I finally got around to doing both of those things - something messy and some kind of sensory bin - on the light table. And it was awesome!  And since we have been enjoying snow for almost a month now, I though it was appropriate to make it into a winter sensory bin.

Winter themed sensory bin for the light table with water beads and alphabet snowflakes from And Next Comes L

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To put this sensory bin together, I filled our bin with some blue water beads and popped it into the freezer for a little bit, just long enough to add a chill to the water beads.  Once out of the freezer, I added some foam snowflakes from the dollar store.  They were dark blue, light blue, and white, and came in a variety of shapes and sizes.  I included some plastic cups from our recycling stash as well.  I could have stopped there, but, of course, I didn't.

I also added some alphabet learning to this sensory bin.  Ah, I'm so sneaky!  Anyway, I found these amazing little acrylic mirror snowflakes at the dollar store, wrote the uppercase letters of the alphabet on each snowflake using a permanent marker, and tossed them in too.  You can see some of the mirrored snowflakes below.  And I love how they add little hints of reflections here and there in the sensory bin.   

Water beads and alphabet snowflakes in a winter themed sensory bin on the light table from And Next Comes L

This sensory bin was so inviting that little hands just couldn't wait to dive in!

Water beads and alphabet snowflakes in a winter themed sensory bin on the light table from And Next Comes L

And there's just something about water beads.  They are so relaxing.  I honestly love swishing my hands through water beads because I find it so calming.  Even my crazy toddler K slows down and plays quietly and contently whenever the water beads come out for playtime.

K checking out the winter sensory bin on the light table from And Next Comes L

Both boys loved this sensory bin, spending hours (no exaggeration either!) scooping and pouring the water beads from various cups, pointing to and identifying letters, and so much more.  They happily and quietly played side by side.  It was both wonderful and kind of eerie to watch.

J and K checking out the winter sensory bin on the light table from And Next Comes L

J also spent some time counting individual water beads and placing them into a small cup.

Counting blue water beads on the light table from And Next Comes L

I am so in love with how this sensory bin turned out.  The water beads looked stunning on our light table and encouraged lots of quiet, focused play and exploration.

Looking for more sensory bin ideas?  You could also try out our Arctic small world sensory bin or browse my Sensory Bins Board on Pinterest.

Winter themed sensory bin for the light table with water beads and alphabet snowflakes from And Next Comes L

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