Monday, February 24, 2014

Musical Instruments Sensory Bin

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Looking for music sensory activities for toddlers and preschoolers? Try this super simple music sensory bin inspired by musical instruments.

As a piano teacher, it's not surprising that I'm passionate about music. But I hope to instill a love for music in my kids as well, which is why we've done quite a few hands-on music activities over the years.

However, when I tried to find music sensory activities for toddlers and preschoolers, there aren't many ideas out there yet.

So naturally, I came up with my own ideas for a music sensory bin.

The inspiration for this particular music sensory bin was the black and white keys of a piano keyboard. I then paired it with some fluffy cotton balls and some musical instrument figures that I was gifted and voila! A quick and easy musical instruments inspired sensory bin.

Music sensory bin from And Next Comes L

Music Sensory Bin: What You'll Need

For this musical instruments sensory bin, I used:

  • Musical instruments TOOB - I was gifted this TOOB by Safari Ltd. All opinions expressed are my own and not influenced by the free product.
First, I added the cotton balls to a plastic bin. Then I cut out five rectangles from the black craft foam to make the black keys of the piano. Then I used black yarn to mark out the white keys of the piano. Then finally I scatted the musical instrument figures throughout the bin.

Alongside the sensory bin, I set out some plastic cups, magnifying glasses, and measuring spoons. Just for some added fun. 

Learning about instruments with a music sensory bin from And Next Comes L

A Perfect Music Sensory Activity for Toddlers & Preschoolers

When the boys examined this sensory bin, they were both excited to see that it looked like a piano.  J exclaimed, "Oooh, a piano!"  He then leaned in and started playing a song using the black keys.

Exploring a music sensory bin from And Next Comes L

J then spent some time looking at the different instruments from the musical instruments TOOB, including the trumpet.  

Learning about instruments with a music sensory bin from And Next Comes L

The detail is amazing on these instruments, which sometimes requires further examination...

K looking through a magnifying glass from And Next Comes L

Then it was time to play the "tuba" as the boys like to call the French Horn.  J had the right idea.

J playing French Horn from And Next Comes L

K, on other hand, liked to play the French horn backwards and hands-free.  Now that is talent!

K playing French Horn from And Next Comes L

A little while later, J dumped out the contents of the sensory bin onto the floor so that he could play with the cotton balls. He loved filling up a plastic cup with the cotton balls to make a bath. I guess the instruments needed a bath!

Imaginative play inspired by a music sensory bin from And Next Comes L

Other Music Activities You'll Love


  1. What a creative sensory bin! This toob was PERFECT for your family!

    1. Thanks, Devany! It really is the perfect TOOB for us!

  2. I wish I had cool things like this to play with when I was little.

  3. Love this! Pinning it on a couple of my pintererst boards!

  4. LOL love the hands-free backwards horn playing!

    1. Hahaha! Yeah, K is quite the character! He's got that hands-free backwards ability mastered.

  5. Why not just let them play on a real piano?,, or key board, that you can buy at a garage sale, really cheap!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Well, if you are familiar with my blog at all (which you clearly did not take the time to do), then you'll know that I am a piano teacher. My boys have access to two pianos and a keyboard at all times and are allowed to play on them anytime that they want. And pianos are rarely "cheap" and not necessarily an option for most families. Besides, this activity was meant to be an introduction to different instruments and what they look like.