I LOVE sensory bins. They have been one of Ellie's favorite things since she was old enough to not shove beans in her mouth.
But with Sam here, and mobile now, I've been stuck. No way am I putting out a bin full of uncooked pasta, or rice, or beans, or sand, or Easter grass, or water beads, or...
Confession: I am an organizational neat freak (this is not a confession for anyone who knows me in real life). Not everything in our house is picked up all the time (one of my mantras for this stage of life is from Pinterest: "Cleaning while you have kids is like brushing your teeth while eating Oreos"), but everything DOES have a place to go. Like, it could all conceptually be picked up and uncluttered.
How does this relate to sensory bins? Well, I have seen color-based sensory bins for quite awhile, but my organizational neat freakishness has prevented me from trying it. My bin supplies are all organized by theme; my fillers are all packaged separately and labeled. The idea of breaking this system to haphazardly grab random toys of a certain color...not my cup of tea.
But I realized it was the perfect solution for Sam. I could skip the filler and just do non-choking toys of a particular color. Hesitatingly, I opened my supplies and started grabbing green things.
And look who scooted right over to check it out.
I won't make a list of supplies, because it was literally walking around our playroom and grabbing green things that were not choking hazards and wouldn't pull toys out that Ellie plays with regularly (e.g., no kitchen food, no dress up items). Generally, here are some things I found: Christmas bows, lids, foam blocks, cup stackers, plastic recorder whistle, scarf, magnetic letters and numbers, scrap fabric, shovel, silicone bowl, and tongs.
I can't believe I haven't done one of these sooner. It was super easy to throw together and Sam has played with it for about 15 minutes at a time on his own each day, plus some time with me talking about the objects. Ellie can use the bin too. We talk about shades (ordering from darkest green to lightest green), shapes (squares, rectangles, circles, spheres, cubes, etc. are all in the bin), and the letters and numerals that are in the bin.