Spring is my absolute favorite season of all. There is just something about the world gaining its color back that makes me so happy. Which also explains my love for fun spring themed sensory bins while at home! With just this one bin and a few extra plastic eggs I have created several different activities for my toddler to enjoy. Also, everything in this bin I purchased from the Dollar Tree, so everything was a dollar.
If your child is under two there are many learning activities with this bin. First of all, scooping items into another bin, cup, muffin pan is great for fine motor practice, which is a very important skill for babies and toddlers to develop. Secondly, grab an item and tell them the color, compare the size to a similar object, explain what it is. For example, “This is a yellow egg. It is smaller than the big plastic yellow egg” use visual cues while speaking this language. Soon your baby will hand you items for you to explain and compare too. I avoid asking questions because it takes away from vocabulary development and them exploring the bin. I rather explain what each object is and use rich vocabulary words to help them mature in that area.
This sensory bin is perfect for 2 years old to sort by color, size, object, and shape. We focus just on one of these sorting activities for the day, so we do not get confused with the objective. Together we scoop, tweeze, or pick up these objects out of the bin and separate them. We separate some on the floor or when we want a change, we sort them in muffin pans and round cake pans for larger objects. By including different pans this keeps her interest and makes it more fun.
As we sort the objects based on the four categories listed above, we also count them when we are finished. We do not count them as we sort them because our little learner would have to recount each color over and over again as she adds to the pile. While we cleanup for the day we count how many she found of each color, size, object, and shape. Furthermore, we do not separate and count all of these items, rather focus on counting to 10 which is a great head start before preschool.
Furthermore, we are also ready to match letters and if your two-year-old is ready to match this is a perfect bin for it. I only focus on a few letters each time, so it doesn’t get overwhelming. Sometimes it’s the letters in her name, other times, it’s the letters she already knows and recognizes. First of all, I put the letters we are focusing on inside the plastic eggs and place them in the bin. I use magnetic letters, but you can also write the letters on paper. We are just matching capital letters to capital letters and lowercase letters to lowercase letters. We are not ready to match capital to lowercase and that is just fine! If your child is able to match capital to lowercase letters feel free to do that instead.
For example, if we are working on the letters s, m, o, and c I put one of each letter into a plastic egg and place the egg in the bin. Secondly, I use the same letters a hide them in the bin. Then, my toddler opens up a plastic egg and has to find the one that matches it that is hiding in the bin. While we discover each letter, I inform her the letters name, I say the sound, and give an example of what starts with that particular letter. I rarely ask questions right now and believe this is all about interacting with letters and the sensory bin while I create a rich vocabulary environment for her to learn in.
My name is Nicole and I am so glad you are here! I have always loved photography and have taken classes. Then I started my teacher journey and fell in love with creating resources for what I needed in the classroom. Now I have combined both of my passions to bring you spectacular resources!