Valentine’s Day is coming up! Do you know what you’re putting in your Valentine’s Day sensory bin yet? Here’s a great idea for preschoolers that is easy & fun…plus there’s a freebie included at the end of this post if you want to extend the learning!
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THE IMPORTANCE OF SENSORY BINS
Sensory bins are such an important part of early childhood education. The amount of learning that little ones experience through sensory play cannot be overstated!
Setting up sensory bins to go along with each holiday is a great way to change things up, spark some imagination & creativity, and get your little learners engaged! Plus you can easily add printable activities to extend the learning.
Want to pair your sensory bin with some great Valentine’s Day books? Check out this post!
VALENTINE’S DAY SENSORY BIN
For our Valentine’s Day sensory bin, I decided to try something new…dyed chickpeas. I love using dyed rice in sensory play, but I had never dyed chickpeas before. Well I’m happy to report it couldn’t be any easier…and they dry SUPER fast!
DIRECTIONS FOR DYEING CHICKPEAS
- Chickpeas (I used one pound for each color)
- Liquid watercolors (These are the ones I used & they worked great!)
- Gallon-sized Ziploc bags (one bag for each color)
- Baking sheet lined with parchment paper
- Pour your chickpeas into a Ziploc bag.
- Add in drops of liquid watercolor (add as much or as little as you want…the more you add, the richer the color will be!) *I did one bag of red and one bag of purple.
- Close the Ziploc bag, then shake it all around until the chickpeas are colored.
- Pour the chickpeas out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper to dry. They’ll dry super fast!
Once the chickpeas are ready, add whatever supplies you’d like! In our sensory bin, I added funnels, scoops, felt hearts (that I got from the Target Dollar Spot), gems, and heart-shaped cupcake liners. Then I let my kiddos start exploring!
EXTEND THE LEARNING
If you’re looking to extend the learning, I have two free printables that you can add to your Valentine’s Day sensory bin!
The first freebie is a color matching activity. This activity comes with a Color Matching Mat, strips of colorful hearts, colorful hearts with words, and color words by themselves. This activity is great for students working on color recognition or reading color words. It can easily be modified to meet your learner’s level.
The second freebie is a letter matching activity. Your little one will match the uppercase and lowercase letters together. This is great for learners working on letter recognition or letter sounds.
Both of the freebies in this post are free to download from our FREE Activity Library. The FREE Activity Library is password protected. If you’d like to get access, join our email community HERE and the password will be emailed to you as a thank you for joining! If you’re already subscribed, you should already have the password. The password is updated every so often, so make sure you stay subscribed so you don’t miss any of our freebies!
Do your littles love playing with sensory bins? Do you have any Valentine’s Day sensory bin ideas you love to use with preschoolers? I’d love to hear them! Comment below or head over to Instagram [@littleslovelearningblog] and share there!
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Looking for more ideas for sensory play? Click HERE to check out all of our SENSORY posts!
Looking for more activities for Valentine’s Day? How about other holidays of the year? Click HERE to see all of our posts that go along with holidays!
MORE VALENTINE’S DAY SENSORY BINS
Are you interested in more Valentine’s Day sensory bins? Check out this post from my friend Kristina from Sweet for Kindergarten for a list of creative & hands-on sensory bin ideas to use with your preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten students. There’s sure to be one on the list that works best for your littles!