I didn’t partake in the Pinterest trend until around 2013. Needless to say, I didn’t use it with my daughter. She was born in 2011. I wish I would have. But, now I have my second chance. So, I usually do my Pinterest browsing in the morning. While browsing one morning, I came across baby activity ideas. This was great. Especially with a newborn in the house. There are so many DIY sensory bin ideas out there. So, I decided to combine the sensory bin concept with my own twist. Introducing my DIY Baby Sensory Bin I put together for $5!
My son Dray isn’t as active as most babies his age. He’s 8.5 months old. But, he has no desire to crawl. He’ll sit up for a good while. But, crawling is out of the question. He also doesn’t pull up yet either. He just doesn’t seem interested quite yet. He’s not much of an “explorer.” But, I still wanted a way to heighten his senses. I wanted to give him the chance to explore. Babies need sensory stimulation. They need to experience feel.
I’m pretty thankful for the numerous Pinterest boards out there. Especially the ones dedicated to this thing called “parenthood.” One morning I was doing my usual Pinterest browsing routine. I came across a board dedicated to baby activities. There were several baby sensory projects. Some of them were sensory bottles. Some of them were outside play. The choices were endless. The baby sensory bins caught my eye. I knew this was something I wanted to try.
So, today, my daughter and I took a spur of the moment trip. We went to the Dollar General across the street and picked up a few supplies. I really wanted to create this sensory bin for Dray. Plus I knew Haley would be interested in helping. She’s such an intelligent 4 year old. She’s also an awesome big sister. She’s so good with Dray. She just wants to make him happy.
We bought our supplies. Then we headed home to begin our project. I unwrapped all our supplies. Haley helped me spread them throughout the bin. I poked tiny holes in the side of the plastic bin. In no particular order. These were to pull the pipe cleaners through. I made the holes with a standard steak cutting knife. Which obviously Haley didn’t help with. I made them small enough that the pipe cleaner didn’t fall out. But, I made them large enough so the pipe cleaner can easily navigate in and out of the hole. The purpose of this is so that Dray can pull the pipe cleaner in and out. Giving him the feeling of the friction between his fingers.
My total expenses for supplies was $5.00 + tax. The total project time was about 10 minutes. He loves this little sensory bin. I plan on using my Cricut machine and personalizing it more. I see many more sensory bins in his future.
Keep in mind: my sensory bin isn’t as elaborate as others. Some of the things I used, you may want to substitute. Honestly, you may have these things already available to you. While I like to idea of adding colorful elbow macaroni and cheerios, Dray isn’t quite there with the chewing thing, But, he is there with the whole putting things in your mouth thing. So, while colorful elbow macaroni is awesome, it’s so small, he’d choke. So, I had to do some substituting. Regardless of my substitution, he loves this sensory bin!
Here’s our sensory bin. Sorry for how blurry it is. Gotta love a smartphone! 😉
46ct Assorted Chenille Stems (aka pipe cleaners): $1.00
80ct Assorted Multicolor Craft Large Pom-Poms: $1.00
1 Clear 13.75×8.125×4.25-in Storage Bin: $1.00
1 Plastic Toy Tug Boat: $1.00
1 Plastic Orange Toy Snake: $1.00
I already had the yellow rubber ball on hand. They also have these at the dollar store. They are $1.00/ea as well. This DIY baby sensory bin isn’t just affordable. It’s simple. Plus, babies love it. My 4.5 year old daughter even involved herself in the play! She loves the idea of this DIY baby sensory bin.
DIY Baby Sensory Bin
Using a utility knife, or you can even use a drill, make about 7 small random holes on different sides of the plastic bin. Make the holes small enough that the chenille stem (pipe cleaner) won’t just fall out. But, large enough that the chenille stem is easily moved in and out of the hole.
Take 7 pipe cleaners and wrap the pipe cleaner around one of your fingers several times.
After the piper cleaner is swirled around your finger, pull it slowly off your finger at the end. This will give it the “bouncy” effect.
Insert the end tip of each chenille stem into separate holes. Allowing some of the stem to hang out the end that is towards the inside of the box.
Insert the larger toys into the box. For example, I put the Tug Boat and Snake in first.
Spread the large Pom-Poms throughout the bin.
Using the pipe cleaners, take 10 of them and shape them like a circle, Bending the ends together. They will look like a bracelet. Place these throughout the bin.
Using the remaining chenille stems, swirl a few. Add them throughout the bin. You can swirl the remaining stems. You can also place them as they are throughout the bin. Whatever you prefer.
Let your baby enjoy the different textures of everything added in the bin!
As you can tell, our little dude is love his new sensory box! Can’t you tell?!
But, that’s not all. Even big sister got in on the action!
This simple, yet fun sensory bin was used for hours today. Now, like I said, I do plan on personalizing it more with the help of my Cricut machine. But, for now, they’re loving it. Plus, it’s awesome to see them play together. Let me know what your favorite DIY project is for your kids. I’d love to try it out with my two little rugrats!