A lot of sensory bins use food in them and this can be great especially if you have a toddler that puts everything in their mouths.

BUT, if you are looking for sensory bins without food as a filler than we have put together some fun ideas for you.

Check our these food free sensory bins for toddlers and preschoolers.

easy low prep sensory bins for the home

Sensory Bins Without Food As a Filler

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Set up this Dinosaur Farm inspired small world play for toddlers and preschoolers in the water table and watch them explore, engage, play and learn.

Water and mud make a great sensory experience and this simple Dinosaur Sensory play is easily adapted for in the home within a plastic storage tub instead of in the water table.

Sand works great for the dinosaur themed play as well. You can let your kids become their own palaeontologists with a simple Dinosaur Excavation Sensory bin!

five little speckled frog sensory bin for toddlers and preschoolers

Puffle is a great sensory play material that can be bought on Amazon (click here). It is foam like and squishes and moulds in the hand. Our Frog Pond Sensory Bin uses this and giant water beads too.

kinetic sand and ocean shells and creatures

Kinetic sand is another fun material to use. You can purchase it or we even a have a recipe to make our own!

homemade kinetic sand recipe

Check out our ocean sensory play with store-bought kinetic sand and our dinosaur excavations with homemade kinetic sand.

With older toddlers and preschoolers why not use beads and buttons in the sensory bin. They can then pour, thread and mix.

fairy garden sensory tub

Another mud and natural materials sensory bin is our Fairy Garden sensory bin. We love how you can add in anything you find and turn it into a little play scene.

shaving foam in a tray for art project with kids

Shaving cream is another great sensory bin filler. You can use it as is and just explore but why not combine with water beads in a shaving foam and water bead sensory bin or even add some liquid watercolours or food colouring and turn it into a colour mixing and art activity for your tots.

Playdough can be used in sensory tubs to create a scene. How about make one inspired by a favourite nursery rhyme like our Five Little Ducks Sensory tub.

autumn sensory bin with fake leaves and acorns

More natural materials with a simple autumn inspired sensory bin. You could recreate it for spring with green leaves, flowers and the wood slices with spring words and themes on them.

If you have some cotton wool then this ice-cream sensory bin is fun to put together for your toddlers and preschoolers to play with.

Old MacDonalds Farm sensory bin for tots

Shredded paper, pom poms and moss from the craft store make this Old MacDonalds Farm Sensory bin a fun play idea that is contained easily for the kids.

That same shredded paper can be used with bugs to create a fun bug sensory bin for your toddler and preschooler too!

More Ideas for Sensory Play For Toddlers and Preschoolers

Click on the image below to be taken to our Sensory Bins and Tubs Pinterest Board with even more food-free sensory play ideas for toddlers and preschoolers.

simple sensory bins and tubs for toddlers and preschoolers all without using food as a filler

You could also try some sensory bags for an alternative play idea

Two simple ideas for easy glow in the dark space themed sensory bags for toddlers. An easy way to do mess-free sensory play with your aspiring astronauts.
easy to set up sensory bins and tubs for play
Author
Erin From Chicken Babies

Erin was a schoolteacher before becoming an at-home teacher to her 4 children. She loves coming up with creative ways to teach her kids and sharing those ideas on her blog, Chicken Babies.

There you will also find lots of birthday party ideas, book lists, educational tools and lessons, and thoughts about parenting.

You can find her on Pinterest, Etsy, Twitter, and Facebook

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