With schools closing soon and the lovely, long December holidays approaching, moms are starting to search for activities to do with the kids. Sensory bins can be enjoyed by children of varying developmental abilities and interests and they are quick and easy to make!

In today’s times pre-school children experience high stress due to their busy schedules- in and out of school. Allowing children to be children again by creating opportunities for play can be a great stress reliever for both you and your kids these holidays. Play has several benefits such as the development of fine and gross motor skills, creativity and independence, language and social skills and learning how to get along with others and manage conflict.

We had so much fun putting a fun sea-themed sensory bin together, it was so easy to set up and of course the little ones had tons of fun playing, exploring and fishing. Some of the products we used are Grow products and available from our website (www.grow-it.co.za).

We used:

This fun sea-themed sensory bin can be made using alternative props you have lying in and around your home, however for those lucky enough to spend some time at the beach this holiday- we have some added ideas! Instead of using pom-poms as we have, you can make use of the sand, sea water, pebbles or grass around your beach house.

If you would like to add sea shells, take your children to the beach and go on a shell scavenger hunt. Encourage children to see if they can find various sized shells: big ones, small ones, similar sized ones or see if they can find shells that are the same type. Study the shells appearance, size and surface with the children and give older children the assignment of researching the names of the shells. (This activity on its own could fill up a whole morning of the long holiday!)

Place all the pom-pom’s/sand/water in a plastic container. Instruct the children to hide the shells/ plastic fish/and or magnetic fish in the pom-pom’s.

Provide children with tools to fish out the props. Using tools such as plastic scoops, magnetic fishing rods and tweezers develops children’s shoulder strength, eye-hand coordination and fine motor skills.

Children can catch the fish using their hands or the magnetic fishing rod. For younger children, parental assistance may be necessary to catch the fish in the sensory bin and once the fish have been placed on a solid, flat surface the young child can attempt to catch the fish on her own using the rod.

Add further sea-themed props, e.g. plastic boats to create new adventures which stimulate discussion and provide new play opportunities e.g. children can sort the pom-pom’s into the boats or allow the fish to jump in the boats.


We hope you enjoyed reading this as much as we enjoyed putting it together. We love to hear from you, so please leave a comment below or pop us an email if you have any questions or ideas to add.

*PROVIDE CAREFUL SUPERVISION AT ALL TIMES. Keep in mind that many of the materials suggested are only appropriate for children 3 years and older. Set limits for safe play. Do not allow the children to throw the activity materials outside the table or containers. Grow Learning Company will not compensate you in any way whatsoever if you ever happen to suffer a loss/inconvenience/damage because of/while making use of information in this article.

  • November 03, 2016
  • Hanli Leeuwner
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