Monday, April 29, 2013

Nature Sensory Bin

Munchkin and Bean LOVE sensory bins. We try to make one every day and it always provides at least an hour of play. I try not to direct their play, apart from reminding them to keep the dirt in the bin and not to throw the rocks. The CAT construction toys are new, so I did show them how each one worked before I set them up to play. I prepared a bin with sand (which already had rocks mixed into it from our beach bin), a bowl of cut grass and other green leafy clippings as well as a few dandelions and an assortment of add-ins including rocks, sea glass, plastic trees, a mountain, insects, snakes, spiders, lizards and a fire-breathing dragon who lives in the mountain, according to Bean. 
Sensory bins like this one are great for learning new words and also recognizing opposites like "big" and "small" or "tall" and "short" or "rough" and "smooth" or "light" and "heavy". The texture of the sand and the rocks are great for little hands to explore. 
I recently bought Bean a book on the food chain, so she was interested in the "green energy" from the plants. She fed the grass to the lizards and I reminded her that lizards also eat insects, so she fed them flies. The spiders also ate the flies and the snakes ate the lizards. 

Practicing using the construction vehicles. 

Showing Kaede a "smooth" rock.

Checking out the new toys.

Adding the snakes to the bin. She loves pressing them into the soil so that she can see the imprint they leave. 

Tossing rocks into the bin.

Bean built a home for the green lizard. 

Munchkin squeezing the sand. 

Big, small, rough, smooth, light, heavy: words we are using with rocks as examples. 

Bean likes to name the colour as well as the type of insect it is. Like "green mantis" and "black fly". She does the same for the lizards and snakes. 

Munchkin is grouping all of the trees together. 

Everything co-existing. 

Munchkin is driving all of the construction toys into the corner and then trying to stack them.

Bean is pretending one of the rocks is a phone.

And is disappointed that no one is answering.

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