New Sensory Bin: Pasta!

Tired of the bean sensory bin, I sought out something new…

I asked for and received a lot of awesome ideas. Since this was only my second actual sensory bin (not counting the fall leaves or scrunched up recycled paper), I figured I would take it easy and go with pasta. I was flying solo for a bit and wanted something easy to clean.

Note: There is a learning curve with sensory bins.

Gentle reminders, frequent but less so over time, were all it took for her to learn that the beans stayed in the bin. Now we can build on that with the new pasta bin, which is much easier to clean.

Now, someone asked for “tips for getting/doing these types of projects while having time for everything else like food prep, cooking, laundry, cleaning up after meals, being outside during playtime in the neighborhood…” I love sensory bins because they get a huge bang for the buck (so to speak since the can be made for free with household items).

Here’s all you really need:

  • A container — not too small, but it doesn’t need to be big like this one. (I sometimes have multiple kids over and wanted lots of space for extra children.)
  • Things to put inside — truly, I think adults care more than children about “new” or “fancy” or “real.” Got some bulk dried goods that have been sitting there too long? Random bag of buttons from old clothing? Make what you have ork for you!

I am a dreamer. I dream up big ideas as I move throughout my days and nights….and don’t do those ideas. I have to end up modifying and shifting.

SUPPLY TIP #1: I went crazy buying supplies when the art supply store was having an enormous sale. I stocked up on all these things that will take me years to get through.

You don’t need to buy anything to make a sensory bin, though. Think texture, size, shape, and color…

SUPPLY TIP #2 (only if you have storage space, or a friend with some): Keep all the random things you think are trash but are fun to create with when you have enough. I am going to store supplies for the Life Learning Coop at my house. I have a vision of an organized space with lots of bins and jars of recycled/repurposed materials to create with. I haven’t gotten to the organized part yet…

The Pasta Bin

I believe it was some one of the links below that had a meatball and sauce sensory bin of pasta. We don’t eat meat so I went with green peppers, onions and mushrooms. My 2.5 yo helped me take the beads out of the old bin, empty the beans, put in the pasta and add the first round of goodies.

I wanted to make felt sauce and felt mushrooms and felt peppers and felt onions so that she could put them together on top of each other. That would look so cool…..

Instead, I grabbed the glass beads, green buttons, and tan pom poms. I did cut out sauce blobs from some dark red felt.

Helping me mix everything up.

I immediately realized there was much new play, exploration and learning that would happen with this bin.

I threw in the learning chopsticks on a whim, but I think the motor/hand-eye coordination play will last a while.

I’m glad I went with different pasta shapes because they are each their own unique fun!

I find sensory bins fun for all ages (meaning for myself). They take little time to get together and can create months of fun. Simply take out and add this or that whenever you feel things getting stale.

Can’t wait to see what unexpected fun the pasta bin brings…


Resources for Sensory Bins:

Resources for Sensory Play

One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Valerie @ on June 25, 2012 at 7:17 am

    Thanks for including us 🙂


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