Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Fun & Easy DIY Fall Sensory Bin

It's time for an Autumn Season Sensory Bin!  Fall is in full swing so it's a great time to explore the sensations of the season with the kids - pumpkins, wood, forest critters, pinecones, acorns & colorful leaves!

There are so many great sensory things about fall.  The colors and textures are really interesting and there's a lot of educational things you can do with them.  Toddlers love investigating with sensory bins and my little ones have had a ball with this bin:

My 4yr old even incorporated other toys to add new play options.  At one point he even stacked the logs to make a garage door and just like in our real garage, with his vehicle on one side, and, as he said, "a big pile of mess" on the other.  Touch√© my small friend.

In a more perfect world I'd have gone the real & found outside route with actual leaves, acorns, gourds, twigs & the like.  It would've been close to free that way, but practically speaking it's not an option with my own wild indoor animals (aka toddlers).  They have a tendency to crunch up or break those things outside, which would create more mess than I want to clean up several times a day.  And I know my 2yr old would have bitten any actual gourds because they do look like veggies I encourage them to eat.  The faux ones don't have the same "taste-me" appeal for her.  I was short on prep time so scouting out a bunch of craft stores to gather various faux items wasn't going to work either.  Instead I got a handy 166pc fall decor set on Amazon to fill most of our bin and it did not disappoint:

It has a nice assortment of real (and surprisingly strong) pinecones and faux acorns with real acorn tops:

It also came with lots of vibrantly colored silk leaves:

And a good selection of styrofoam gourds and mini pumpkins:

I found this fabulous set of forest animal figurines on Amazon too.  The assortment includes harder-to-find critters like a badger & hedgehog and the detail is top notch:

The sizes were ideal to play & hide within all the different forest elements:

I also added some Tree Block logs and rounds we already had.  They made a great textured woody section for the beaver, bear and badger to climb over:

I got a set of fine motor skill tools to add to the sensory fun:

I'm probably going to have to buy a second one because they both want to use the purple scissor-style scoop constantly.  To be fair, there is something really appealing about how it works and being able to see what's being scooped.  It's the perfect size for picking up the acorns, animals and pine cones:   

The set also came with some easy-grab tweezers and I added in some of our magnifying glasses too:

I found these little trays at the Dollar Tree, which are perfect for examining specimens and for activities like matching and counting:

There's a lot of investigative play to be had and it cleans up easily, which is always key for me.  I know we'll use all these items in other ways too, so it's become a great seasonal bin for us.  Easy fall fun = a win! 


  1. What a great idea to let kids explore nature up close & love the porcupine ...

  2. Love this sensory bin! Everything fall is so much fun! #trafficjamweekend

  3. So cute! Both the babies & the sensory bin! Thanks for sharing on Crafty Creators!

  4. What fun!!! I miss those days with my kids when they were little! Enjoy and thank you for sharing at Share Your Style last week. I was able to feature your post this week (SYS #363) for you, and I love all the fun sensory things you've found for the kids to play with! Of course, we always had things like this at school for our Life Skills students (California) and later here in Texas for our PABS students, who loved collecting things just as much.

    Happy fall to you and your family,
    Barb :)


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