Welcome to our new series – A-Z of Sensory Play! Over the next 26 weeks, we will bring you a sensory play activity based on the letter of the week. Each sensory activity will be easy to set up and create hours of endless fun. What is more, each Thursday we shall post further alphabet activities from across the internet to inspire your play.
Today we kick off the A-Z of Sensory Play series with A is for Apple Scented Sensory Play for Toddlers. Here is what we used to create our sensory base:
* Two bags of economy rice
* Two zip-loc bags
* Two shades of green paint
* Two Apple and Cinnamon tea bags
* Baking tray
Place one packet of rice into a zip-loc bag and pour a generous amount of green paint inside. Empty the contents of the Apple and Cinnamon teabag inside before closing it securely. Now the fun part – give your child the closed zip-loc bag to mix the contents together. This is a great activity to get them using up any excess energy as they move the paint around to cover the rice. My son seem to think jumping with the bag will help the process!
Repeat the same procedure in the second zip-loc bag with another shade of green to get a two tone effect. Then spread the rice out evenly on a baking tray and wait for it to dry. We left ours overnight, but it should be dry within an hour.
The next morning I poured the two shades of apple scented rice into a green box along with four brightly coloured plant pots. Each pot contained a variety of tools perfect for developing fine motor skills. In the middle, I placed an apple shaped bird feeder I picked up from the Dollar Store.
First we separated the apple shaped bird feeder and filled it with the green rice. I challenged my son to see who could empty the feeder – it took a while before he realised it had to be shaken. The smell from our apple scented rice was subtle and didn’t linger on our hands. It felt wonderful to bring up handfuls of the sweet smelling rice and watch it fall.
Next he explored the different fine motor skill equipment. Each tool was used to transfer the rice from the sensory bin into the coloured flower pots. The scoops were the easiest for the toddlers to use and they managed to fill a pot up quickly. The Squeezy Tweezer, which strengthens hand and finger muscles, was great for transferring small amounts of rice at a time.
The Handy Scooper, great for encouraging the motions needed for scissor use, picked up large quantities of rice which we emptied into the flower pots.
For an additional challenge, I wanted to see if my son could pick up the rice using a Jumbo Tweezer. This was certainly harder than it looked, but practice makes perfect.
Looking for more fun things to do with your kids? We want to recommend you our new book – Learn with Play (150+ Activities for Year-Round Fun and Learning)! You will find inside easy to prepare activities for everyday fun as well for all seasons and holidays! Here is a preview for you:
Book is available as: