12 sensory bins for toddlers using pom poms

This month we decided to create sensory bins for toddlers challenge. The idea? Create as many sensory bins for toddlers using pom-poms as the main element.

If you are tired of finding a ton of ideas that require a million supplies that you don’t have, then follow along. Buy a bag (are a few bags), and let’s get started with this awesome challenge of sensory bins for toddlers.

What pom-poms to buy?

There are so many pom-pom varieties and sizes available. I wanted to keep things simple and have a variety, so I chose a bag that had a variety of colors and sizes.

I purchased these at Walmart; the bags were small, so I got 4 large bags and added some smaller white bags I found. Total cost? $8!

I chose a bag that had a variety of colors. This allowed me to make different looks by using only a few colors or specific combinations. Winter theme? Use white and blue! Want to recreate grass and water? Use blue and green. One bag- many possibilities!

Note: I pair many of these sensory bins with different figurines purchased at our local Dollar Store. You can replace them with any figurine you have at home to keep the same learning concept.

 sensory bins for toddlers

12 sensory bins for toddlers Using Pom Poms

Winter theme with white and blue pom poms

When it comes to creating a theme for a sensory bin, you can use the pom-poms’ colors to inspire you. Winter cords are usually white and blue, and white pom poms can represent snow.

To create the theme, I chose only the white pom poms and a few blue ones. I provided tongs to work on fine motor skills. I also added wooden tongs and wooden cups. I had some blue clear cups that went well with the thee, so I added those too! I also created some slides for the pom-poms to slide through. To complete the sensory bin, I added a few figurines I had for winter: Polar bears!

Sometimes I collect recycled materials, and this time, it came in handy! I cut up a few paper towel tubes to create some fun slides for the bears and pom-poms to slide through. The beats were too big, but the pom-poms fit perfectly!

Pom Pom Sorting Sensory Bin

Following the idea of the paper tubes, I created another bin just using those, the wooden tongs, and lots of colorful pom poms.

This bin was perfect to work on color sorting! Early math skill and color recognition activity.

The boys came up with their own color sorting game, and that’s perfect! As caregivers, our job is to provide them the tools and space to get creative and use their imagination. The skewers they created is a perfect example of that!

Small world with pom poms

Day three was all about the zoo! Pair your sensory bins with books and they will engage in play for longer.

In this case, we read “the view at the zoo” and I used only the green pom-poms to represent the grass and yellow to represent the water. I added some zoo mini figurines and I let creativity do its job. At the last minute, I added blue pom-poms and fish figurines. When it comes to creating a small world, there are really no rules. You create a little play environment and you let the kids play. There are no fine motor tools or unique skills being developed other than creativity and encouragement of creative and pretend play.

Pretend play usually comes closer to 2 years old, and it starts with the environment and routines of their everyday life. As they get to understand the world around them, they start implementing that in their play too.

Pom Poms Construction Site

What toddler boy is not obsessed with construction vehicles? I know mine is! To set up this construction-themed sensory bin, we pretended the pom-poms were rocks. The goal was to push the pom-poms around our construction site using the tools. I added wooden planks, wood pieces from a mini Jenga game we got at the dollar store that I had from a leftover project, and he ran to the garden to get some real rocks too. And of course! A few toilet paper rolls, because why not!

dinosaur sensory bins using pom poms and easter eggs

Another loved theme is dinosaurs! A bin full of pom-poms, Easter eggs, and dinosaurs is all you need for this bin. My initial idea was to hide the dinosaurs inside the eggs and then the eggs under the pom poms. It was a great initial idea, but a better one was what Manu created. He put the pom poms inside the eggs and then open them really fast for the pom-poms to fall off.

pom poms Ice Cream Shop

The key to this bin is to give them an ice cream scoop. This one is from the dollar store. I separated the pom-poms into three different bowls to pretend they are the ice cream. I let him choose what flavors each one represented. Then I added small pompoms in smaller bowls to represent the sprinkles. Then, the game started! We poured and pretended to eat all types of ice cream bowls.

Pom Pom letter shopping  

This activity can be done with any learning activity you are currently working on. For us, it is recognizing the letters of the alphabet. I took letter magnets (or you can use puzzle pieces) and mix them around with the pom-poms. His job was to find the letter and place them in the basket.

He decided that we had to walk over to the refrigerator once we had a few letters and place them over to review each one. This was a great activity to get familiar with the concept that we are learning. It is better than a worksheet because kids learn best through play and learn best when the senses are involved.

Pom-pom color sorting with rainbow stacker

If you are working on color recognition, then this is an enjoyable activity to do! You can do it with a rainbow stacker or do it with cups of different colors. Model the activity first for your toddler to know what the goal of the activity is. Then, allow some time for independent play and find other ways to use the bin items.

pom pom soup sensory bin

This one was one of my favorite sensory bins. Definitely, one to do on a hot summer day and definitely do it outside. Lots of water, lots of bowls and cups, and lots of pom poms to transfer from place to place. Seriously, so much fun! He remembered our experiment to learn sink or float, and he even did it on his own with the pom-poms. It was a great moment for me lol I felt so proud!

Pom pom web Animal rescue

This sensory bin is a great idea for Spring or a garden theme. The dollar store had a bag of bugs, and this time we created an animal web rescue.

You will need a bowl, tape, tongs, animal figurines, and pom-poms to set this sensory bin.

Place the pom poms inside the bowl and mix in the animals. Place a few tapes over the bowl, crossing and overlapping each other. Make it simple to start to avoid frustration. If it’s too easy, then add more tape strips on the next round. I place 3 tapes, and that was enough to make it hard for Manu to try.

Adding the tongs and it is an extra challenge for the kids to try to grab the animals. It was a challenge, but he felt so happy and accomplished when he successfully grabbed each animal. It was so much fun to see him work so hard and strategize how he would take out each animal. In the end, he got tired of the challenge with the tongs and still enjoyed finding them and learning the names of each one.

pom Pom shoots

This was one of the bis that we repeated a few times over the week. Who knew that all we needed was a large paper tube leftover from our Christmas wrapping paper, some tape to attach it to the table.

I offer three different size shoots. One made out of a toilet paper tube, a medium-size made out of a paper towel tube, and a large one made out of the Christmas wrapping paper tube. His favorite? As you can see in the photos, the Christmas paper tube, and his excitement to throw the pom poms on one side and find them all the way at the bottom of the table in the bin, we placed to collect them when they fall.

Pom pom pool

And to celebrate our last idea, we did one sensory bin for toddlers that was a bit messier! A pom-pom pool! The only different thing you need that we have not yet mentioned is a huge bin to do this one. This is an under the bed storage bin that we have used for many years when it comes to sensory bins. When he was little, I used to place him inside this bin and then the sensory play bin inside; this way, all the mess would stay in the bin instead of all over my floor.

For this bin, add all of your pom-poms to the bin and let him get in and explore with his feet and “swim in the pool.” For our activity, he wanted more company and brought a few friends to swim with him. We pretended we bathed them, and the pom-poms were the water. Lost of pretend play happening!

Take your sensory bins for toddlers to the next level!


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