We had snow here last night and it is cold outside! I love being able to watch the snow fall from inside this time of year, but with it getting colder outside, what better time to bring some warm weather fun inside?! A sand sensory bin is a really fun way to play in the sand year round! Here are five ideas for fun ways to use kinetic sand indoors. Of course, I keep our sand in a bin with the lid on and pop it into our sensory table when we are ready to play!
One way that we love playing with kinetic sand is with dinosaurs. I recently picked up a dinosaur dig puzzle kit and we’ve had so much fun with it! I bury the dinosaur “bones” in the sand and Noah uses the tools to dig them up. He still needs me to put the puzzle together for him at the end, but then he loves to play in the sand with the finished dinosaur. If you are feeling really creative, here’s a fun post about creating your own dinosaur fossils!
Create a Beach
Another way that we use our kinetic sand is when talking about different ocean animals. Early in the summer, you can often find miniature sand castle molds. (I picked mine up at Michael’s). Noah loves instructing me to build the castles so that he can “mash them down” with his ocean animals. He’s a toddler boy, what can I say. I have learned through his “mashing castle phase” that kinetic sand is far better to have inside than real sand because it sticks together, so its much easier to clean up! We even use things like measuring spoons and cups to build sand castles! Different sizes of measuring cups are a great way to build tiered castles.
Cookie Cutter Shapes
A third way to enjoy your sand sensory bin is by using cookie cutters to make outlines in the sand. You could use letters, shapes, or a fun theme of cookie cutters. No surprise here, we used trucks! This would be a great way to encourage kids to learn letters! I happen to have a set of alphabet cookie cutters, but if you don’t, just draw the letters in the sand with your finger and let your kids copy or trace over it.
Another fun way to play in the sand is to create a treasure hunt! I hide the mini Thomas trains in the sand and then Noah digs for them. (We do the same thing in our beans bin). He gets excited about digging for treasure!
Shapes, Numbers, and Alphabet Tracing
This one really couldn’t be more simple. Just draw a shape, number, or letter with your finger. You can either have them copy it or have them trace it with their finger! We’ve recently started doing this with Noah’s name too so that he starts to recognize the letters in his name!