We're just starting to go through the alphabet in our at-home preschool by learning about all sorts of things that begin with the letter A. We're learning about apples, ants, airplanes, alligators, and our own name. To help with name recognition, I made this simple sensory bin for AJ to use all week.
I started with a shoebox-sized plastic bin with a lid. That way when we're not playing with it, we can close it up securely. I then filled it with a variety of dried beans. I had several already-opened bags of beans in my cupboard, so I filled it with black beans, red beans, lentils, and split peas. I liked the variety of colors and plan on using this for several other sensory bins I have planned.
Next, I added the letters. I used our magnetic letters. I typed up AJ's name in a variety of fun fonts and colors, laminated them, and cut them out individually. I also wrote the individual letters on milk caps. You could also use small wooden disks, wooden letters, alphabet blocks, foam letters, or anything else you can find to write letters on. To complete the bin, I added a few bowls and spoons for scooping. To control the mess factor, we lay out an old pillowcase and put the bin on top of it. There is only one rule: everything stays on the pillowcase. It really was simple to put together. I don't know why I ever hesitated in making sensory bins!
AJ spent a long time playing with her bin. She ran her fingers through it. Hid all the letters under the beans, and spent a very long time scooping and pouring. We also worked together to spell her name with all the different letters in the bin.
Do you like to make sensory bins? How do your children play with them?
Linking up to It's Playtime