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Preschoolers use their senses to explore and learn about the world. To encourage these explorations, you can make a Sensory Tub with substances and materials for children to touch, smell, see, and hear.

These activities are fantastic for little ones; As well as being great fun, giving children the opportunity to play with and explore different textures and materials helps them to learn all about the world around them. Sensory play also helps to build vocabulary, encourage children to play and learn together, and begin to learn some simple scientific and mathematical concepts.

A Sensory Tub is a large container or tray filled with sensory materials for toddlers to explore. Here are some of our favorite ideas & themed Tubs to get you inspired and encourage sensory play with items that are fun, easy, affordable, and promote learning!


Rainbow Coconut (edible)

Materials: Shredded coconut, water, food coloring, paper towel.

Instructions: And Next Comes L


Farm Yard

Materials: Dried black beans, yellow colored beans, green shredded paper, marbles and blue construction paper. piece of cardboard, paint, animal toys.

Instructions:  Creative Projects for Kids


Ocean World

Materials: Jello, porridge oats, water, food coloring (optional), homemade chocolate play dough, shell pasta shapes, selection of different sea creature toys & plants.

Instructions: Rainy Day Mum- Living Naturally With Kids



Materials: semolina flour or sand, stones, toy desert animals, reptiles and insects, foam sheets to make cacti, tinfoil, acrylic paint.

Instructions: Creative Projects for Kids



Materials: Dried black beans, glow in the dark stars, sparkly pompoms for meteors, toy planets or marbles, yellow bouncy ball for sun, small plastic astronauts, shuttles and rockets.

Instructions: Small Potatoes


Winter Wonderland

Materials: Cotton balls, wooden snowmen, frosted toy trees, holiday decorations.

Instructions: Living Montessori Now


**Sensory Tubs are tons of fun, but not all of them are appropriate/safe for toddlers and younger babies.  Tub contents for toddlers should be edible (or taste-safe) and/or contain pieces that are larger than the inside of a cardboard roll to prevent choking. Please exercise caution and always use age-appropriate materials when creating your Sensory Tubs.