Sensory bins are one of my favorite toddler and preschooler activities! They really are so fun to put together and always seem to provide hours of play for children. Our latest sensory bin is car themed for all the car-loving children out there!
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My two year old is madly in love with car play! My purse and jacket pockets always contain a few Hot Wheels for wherever we may be, and Theo has even been known to go to sleep at night cuddling his toy monster truck!
I decided to focus on Theo’s love of cars for our latest car themed sensory bin. And although I focused on Theo’s love of cars when putting it together, my five year old joined right in the sensory play too! (This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.)
Car Themed Sensory Bin
Materials for the Sensory Bin
- Plastic Box or other container to hold the materials
- Black beans
- Yellow straws
- Red, green, and yellow pom poms
- Toilet paper rolls
- Toy cars
Disclaimer: Beans pose a choking hazard to children under age 3. Use a larger loose part that is not a choking hazard in place of the beans if you’re child is still mouthing items. (Here is a link to a choking hazard tester you can purchase.) Never leave your child unattended.
Setting up the Sensory Bin
While the kids were resting, I assembled this simple car themed sensory bin.
I pulled out our trusty 28 quart plastic box that we usually use for sensory bin play and poured in some dry black beans. (When you are done with the beans, be sure to keep them for future bins and crafts! I have a big plastic bin where I keep all my sensory bin materials like pastas, beans, and lentils to be used again.)
Then I cut up some yellow straws and placed them on top of the beans representing lines on a road. I also added some red, yellow, and green pom poms to resemble traffic lights. The final touch was a few empty toilet paper rolls which I stuck right into the beans.
And of course the cars!
Playing with the Car Themed Sensor Bin
Both Lucy and Theo were so excited to dive right in and start playing!
Theo immediately ran his hands through the beans over and over.
He loved filling the cardboard tubes with beans and then watching them spill out.
The cardboard tubes also made great tunnels for the cars!
Theo also enjoyed making the cars go through the tunnels way up high and then watching them fall into the sensory bin.
And sometimes the cars had to travel though bean filled tunnels.
Lucy took a different approach with the sensory bin. She used the straws to make candles for a cake! (She added her little toy mouse to the sensory bin to play… and eat lots of cakes!)
Our car themed sensory bin got a lot of action the first day!
The kids have been playing with it over five consecutive days now. It’s so interesting to watch how their play changes and becomes more complex as the days go by!
Be sure not to miss these other toy car posts on Buggy and Buddy:
- Indoor ‘Snowy’ Car Ramp
- The Ultimate Hot Wheels and Toy Car Activity Roundup
- How to Make Wooden Ramps and Roads for Toy Cars