We’ve been learning about outer space all week with activities that have been both fun and educational. As we continued discussing our solar system, it gave me an idea for our next sensory bin theme. With dry black beans as the base, we added in astronaut figurines, sensory balls, glow in the dark stars and scoops to create this fun sensory activity. This bin would also work great with alternative base fillers such as black pom-poms, deep purple/black rainbow rice or dyed pasta.
This solar system bin is a new favorite in our house for both boys. Christopher has spent hours this week scooping beans and pretending to drive the space rover figurine all over the kitchen. Connor has been engaging in imaginary play by flying the rockets around and making story lines for the astronauts mission. I always enjoy seeing the unique ways they find to play in our bins.
- 1 Plastic storage bin
- I used the Sterlite 28qt under bed storage bin
- 6 Pounds of dry black beans
- Add more or less for your needs
- Astronaut figurines
- I got mine at my local Joann Fabrics store and have seen this brand at Hobby Lobby
- Planet figurines or sensory balls
- The sensory balls also come in a more affordable set here but the colors vary from what we used
- Glow in the dark stars
- Measuring cups or scoops
- Decorative rocks
- I recommend checking your local craft or hobby store
- Additional toys
- Look around the house for toys you already own or visit your local dollar store for affordable new additions
For older kids, there are some great ways to modify this setup. If you followed along with our solar system planet painting project earlier this week, those foam planets would be a great substitution for the sensory balls. Additionally, you could create moon rocks using sheets of aluminum foil and forming them into balls. Another fun activity for more experienced children is to allow for play in the dark since some of the elements glow. As always, supervision is appropriate when engaging in sensory bin play.