Creating a Christmas sensory bin for preschoolers doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. In fact, sometimes the most simple ideas are the best, and we all need that when we are planning our Christmas Theme in preschool.
But this Christmas sensory bin is one of those ideas.
But so much fun for your little preschoolers.
Simple Christmas Sensory Bin for Preschoolers
Christmas can sometimes be a sensory overload for preschoolers.
By the way, this page has all my best Christmas theme activities!
I was walking down the holiday decor aisle at a local store the other day, and this is what I saw.
A dancing Santa that was motion-sensored so every time you walked past it the Santa danced. And when the Santa danced it also played Christmas carols in that super high-pitch, digital and techno-y sound. You know what I’m talking about.
Oh, and the Santa was holding his bag and presents, which lit up as it danced…next to those overly scented cinnamon pine cones.
So to condense this…one little piece of holiday decor can be a total sensory overload when you have a singing, dancing, flashing Santa that by proxy smells like chemical cinnamon.
Which is why I adore this Christmas sensory bin for my preschoolers! It is none of those things! And let’s face it, sometimes preschoolers on their own can be like that Santa.
So sometimes the opposite is needed during the holiday season.
Sensory play doesn’t have to be an inundation of sensory input. Sometimes something soft and quiet is the right kind of sensory input.
Simple Christmas Sensory Bin for Preschoolers
This Christmas sensory bin will not overload your preschooler with sensory input. Rather, it is quite calming.
This simple sensory bin idea can also be used in a sensory table, too. You only need a few materials which you probably already have in your craft closet.
- red pom poms
- green pom poms
- white pom poms
- mini Christmas erasers (or other small trinkets)
- small, paper mache gift boxes
- small, Christmas colored bowls
- mini party scoops (or you can use something like formula scoops)
How to Set Up Your Christmas Sensory Bin
It’s simple. Pour all the pom poms into a large tub or into your sensory table at your preschool. Mix them up. You don’t need too much, just enough to barely cover the bottom of the bin.
Then toss in the mini erasers.
You don’t have to use mini erasers. Any miniature Christmas toy set will do. I like any of these, too.
Now, invite your preschoolers to come and explore their Christmas sensory bin!
Having Fun with Your Christmas Sensory Bin
Now, this Christmas sensory bin really is designed for preschoolers…and preschool teachers and preschool parents, too! It’s so quiet, and not very messy. At least, the mess is very easy to clean up since your sensory bin filler is a bunch of fuzzy pom poms.
I also offered a few small, paper mache boxes, like those from an Etsy jeweler, and my little boys loved filling the boxes. Especially my toddler son. The size of the pom poms and the boxes were just right for his little hands.
My older boys requested a scoop. I hadn’t offered one because I thought the pom poms would be too big, but the boys wanted to explore the sensory bin with a scoop, so I gave them what I had on hand. Leftover formula scoops. Some of the pom poms got stuck in the scoop, but that ended up being just fine because then they got to pick them out.
Then my older boys took their toddler brother’s idea to the next level and tested “how many fluffy balls fit in the boxes.” As you can see, we tried stuffing a little. But before that happened my three-year-old counted as he dropped the pom poms into the boxes. He quickly ran out of numbers, which was a good opportunity for me to practice with him counting above twenty.
And of course, my boys enjoyed filling the bowls and dumping the contents out. That’s a given, right? But what didn’t expect was my boys to ask why it didn’t “you know, make that sksksk sound”. They were referring to the sound rice makes when they pour it.
More Ways to Enjoy this Christmas Sensory Bin for Preschoolers
The above is just a basic overview of how we enjoyed this Christmas sensory bin, but there are so many more extensions as I brought the bin out several times over the following days. Here are a few ideas for how else to use this sensory bin.
- Sort the pom poms by colors. If you don’t have colored bowls, offer sheets of colored paper.
- Sort the mini erasers.
- Use the mini erasers as fine motor practice and invite your preschooler to stand them up in a line.
- Use the sensory bin filler to make patterns.
- Try some simple addition and subtraction, too.
- Sort the pom poms by size. We had small, medium, and large in our Christmas sensory bin.
What did your preschooler do with this sensory bin?
Looking for Christmas Printables?
These are tested by my own kids and preschoolers. Just click the image below to see the post.
Want Even More Christmas Activities?
You can find all my best Christmas activities for preschoolers in the link below.
Additionally, here are four favorite Christmas activities we’ve done in preschool. Just click the images.
I’m Sarah, an educator turned stay-at-home-mama of five! I’m the owner and creator of Stay At Home Educator, a website about intentional teaching and purposeful learning in the early childhood years. I’ve taught a range of levels, from preschool to college and a little bit of everything in between. Right now my focus is teaching my children and running a preschool from my home. Credentials include: Bachelors in Art, Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.