Linking books and activities is a great way to explore books in a different way. It brings them to life, introduces them to new concepts and your little ones learn that reading is fun, playful, creative, and more. This simple sensory bin for toddlers and preschoolers is themed around the book Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker and so much fun.

Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker

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Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker is a favourite book of our kids. After living on a construction site for a while as the houses around us were built the machines that whizzed around become favourites.

With lovely illustrations and rhymes it’s great to read and enjoy. If you haven’t got a copy or would just like to enjoy it the video below is an animated story telling of the story that you and your tot can enjoy.

Construction Sensory Bin

I love this activity for setting up a week or longer of simple play that our little ones can enjoy independently or we can join in with as well.

Using a plastic tray and some food that we had that was out date we set it up with some craft supplies and toys to create a mini building site and then invited our children to play with it.

invitation to play, goodnight goodnight construction site themed sensory bin set up with brown rice, pinto beans, trucks and building blocks

We used a combination of brown rice and dried beans to give a different sensory experience as they are moved around by the trucks and lifted and poured.

child starting to play in a sensory tub set up around the theme of a construction site

With younger toddlers and preschoolers supervise with the beans and rice.

child filling up the scoop of a truck as they play in a sensory bin set up like a building site

If you add in some wooden blocks your child can pretend to use a crane to lift them just like in the book. Sit back and watch them explore the sensory tub and recreate pages from the book.

Why not check out some of our Book Themed Sensory Bins to encourage your toddler and preschooler with reading as well!

More Construction Themed Activities

Build my Name STEM activity for prechoolers

Using different blocks and shapes make letters, words and names with a construction themed name activity for your toddlers and preschoolers.

Materials for your Building Site Sensory Tub

the materials for creating a simple construction sensory tub for kids, trucks, building blocks, trees, brown rice, dried pinto beans and the book Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site to read alongside the play
  • Construction Toy Set ideal for little hands and will fit in the sensory tub easily
  • Mini Trees for adding some scenery to the construction bin
  • Wooden blocks – this plain set are ideal for lots of different activities to do with your toddlers and preschoolers
goodnight goodnight construction site board book placed above a simple construction themed sensory tub set up ready for a child to play. The sensory tub is filled with trucks, blocks, cones and trees on a bed of rice and pinto beans ready for play.

Building Site Sensory Bin for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Cerys Parker
A simple to set up sensory bin for toddlers and preschoolers inspired by the book Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker
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Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 1 hr

Equipment Needed

  • Sensory Tub
  • Construction Toys
  • Play Trees
  • Blocks
  • Craft Sticks

Materials Needed

  • Brown Rice
  • Dried Pinto Beans


  • Read the book, “Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site” by Sherri Duskey Rinker and talk about the different trucks you see, what they do and how they seem. You can also watch the YouTube Video of the animated book as above.
    goodnight goodnight construction site board book on a white background
  • Pour a thin layer of brown rice at the bottom layer of the sensory tray. Spread the rice out evenly.
    brown rice in a layer at the bottom of a sensory tub (plastic box)
  • Add the dry pinto beans to the bin.
    dried pinto beans added to the corners of a rice filled sensory tub ready for children to play in
  • Add the construction toys, building blocks, and popsicle sticks. Then, place the trees around the bin.
    building blocks, craft sticks and toy road cones added to a sensory tub awaiting the trucks for a sensory play experience for kids
  • Allow the child to engage with the sensory bin and observe his/her actions with the contents of the bin! Let them pour, lift and play, you'll see them recreating scenes from the book as well as further developing the story too.
    construction sensory tub set up ready for a child to play in


Keyword Book Based Activity, Sensory play
Have you Made This?Let us know how it went!

More Book Inspired Sensory Bins

Love the idea of book themed sensory bins then why not check out these other ones below.

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Bookish play pinterest image for a sensory tub to go with the book Goodnight, goodnight construction site for preschoolers and toddlers
Cerys Parker

Cerys is a marine biologist, environmental educator, teacher, mum, and home educator from the UK. She loves getting creative, whether it is with simple and easy crafts and ideas, activities to make learning fun, or delicious recipes that you and your kids can cook together you'll find them all shared here on Rainy Day Mum.

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