This bin contained a scoop of play sand and some blue water beads. I cut a tiny piece from a stained, old hand towel to make a blanket for Piglet to lounge around on the beach. By some stroke of luck, I found a small drink umbrella leftover from the time I made my little sister a beach themed birthday cake four years ago. I filled the ocean with various oceanic creatures: a dolphin, some fish (bath toys), a whale that is actually an ice pack I found at the dollar store (sticking it in the freezer 20 minutes before doing this activity was just time enough to make it cold and fun to play with), and a jellyfish I made by squirting some hair gel into a tiny cellophane bag. I did hide a few jingle bells in with the water beads so that the bin made a fun noise as Ethan dug through the water.
2. The Clean-Up-The-Ocean Bin
I've been starting to really teach Ethan the importance of picking up after ourselves and keeping our environment free of pollution. Ethan's become pretty good about spotting trash on the beach that needs to be picked up, so I thought this could be the makings of a great sensory bin. All it took to get started were some odds and ends from our tot school stash and a slice of a bath fizz plus a squirt of blue paint. Ethan got to work quickly removing the garbage from the ocean to keep it clean for the fish and sea creatures. He loved feeling around the bottom of the ocean to see what he could find!