The development of a child’s five most essential senses: hearing, sight, touch, taste, and smell, is one of the foremost support a child needs for the development of their language and cognitive capabilities, fine and motor skills, social interaction, and problem-solving.
Even though children can develop their senses in the outside world through experiences, nannies, parents, and childcare workers can further develop a child’s senses with the help of sensory bins.
There are numerous possible ways to develop a child’s senses, and letting them play with sensory bins is one of the most effective and fun ways to learn. A sensory bin or tray is a large container usually made out of plastic tubs with various materials such as sand, water brands, shredded paper, and even water to stimulate a child’s senses.
Benefits of Sensory Bins
Studies show that giving the child sensory trays can help their brains build nerve connections that are important in completing complex tasks.
Sensory bins can help the child associate words to their senses to describe their experience. Nannies could teach them what the terms smooth, rough, soft, and hard mean as they play to help expand the child’s vocabulary.
Squeezing, sorting, scooping, and pinching them items in the sensory tray helps a child to develop fine motor skills. Adding objects of multiple sizes in a sensory tray would maximize the child’s learning.
Nannies can help their children develop essential social skills by communicating with them while engaged in sensory play. This could be through storytelling or describing the items found in the bin.
Sensory bins provide the child with an excellent opportunity to learn how to share and engage in exploratory play with other children.
Create a fun learning experience by encouraging your child to sort the items by colour, shape, size, and feel. You can also have the children dig around for things through a classic game of i-Spy.
Sensory trays can help anxious or frustrated children to calm down.
Making Sensory Bins
Sensory Tray Ideas
Shaving cream is one of the most budget-friendly fillers you can put in your child’s sensory tray. All you need is a bottle of shaving cream, food dye, and small toys. Introduce your kid to creatures from the sea by mixing shaving cream with a few drops of blue food dye and throwing in figurines of fishes and other sea creatures.
Shaving Cream and Water Beads
Water beads are often found in the school supplies section of local stores. Simply mix a bottle of shaving cream with some water beads for a colourful learning experience.
Cloud dough is a simple filler to make that uses two ingredients you can find in your home: flour and oil. Each recipe calls for 8 cups of flour to 1 cup of oil. This sensory tray lets the child mould the cloud dough into different shapes, including a ball and a square.
For a more interactive experience, you can throw it small tools like scoops and moulds.
Rainbow Rice fillers are great fillers if you want to bury small treasures for your child to find. This sensory tray is made by mixing rice with vinegar and food dye or acrylic paint to create colourful bowls of rice.
Use pantry staples to create a bright, bold, and colourful rainbow pasta noodle sensory bin. Using different kinds of dried pasta will create a sensory experience that’s full of different sizes and textures for your child to explore.
Combine white and blue-coloured rice with pom poms and pipe cleaners to create a weather-themed sensory bin. You can have the children dig around for other toys, such as birds and smaller pom poms. You can also encourage them to “make it rain” coloured rice.
Fill a tray with water beads, pond critters, and rocks to make it resemble a bond. Nannies can use this sensory tray to introduce children to various pond creatures and also educated them about the dos and don’ts when walking near these bodies of water.
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Are you looking for more tips and tricks? Check out our blog posts for dozens of engaging play ideas you can do with your children.