Tag: sensory play



Sensory play involves more than just exploring textures, it includes activities that stimulate all senses – touch, sound, sight, smell and taste. Sensory play is a great way for children to develop their motor skills. It also teaches language skills and critical thinking skills in a fun and challenging environment. There are numerous different types of sensory play.

Think outside the box when introducing sensory play to your children. Here are a few ideas for all the senses:

Messy play – Perfect for touch. Texture toys like slime, play dough and kinetic sand give children the chance to feel these different textures through creative play.

Baker’s delight – Let their noses guide them by introducing the smells and tastes of the kitchen through baking. You can even stage a pantry treasure hunt and sniff various herbs, spices and other aromatic ingredients.

Music to their ears – Explore sound sensations by crafting musical instruments at home. Try filling rice into an empty water balloon or creating a drum from a MILO tin.



Sensory play is anything involving our senses – hearing, seeing, touching, tasting, smelling, and movement. It is important for children to engage in sensory play as it helps to develop motor skills, language skills, social-emotional skills, and thinking skills. Here are some great activities for sensory play.

• Slime – It is definitely the craze at the moment. Make your own or purchase some ready-made slime and have a gooey good time.

• Playdough – A little less messy but still great fun for kids and adults. Get creative and make cakes/burgers/pizzas or use cookie cutters to create different shapes.

• Sensory walk – Create an outdoor sensory walk by using grass, sand, pebbles and even a tub of dishwashing liquid bubbles.

• Rainbow glitter jars – Fill a jar/bottle with water, glitter glue and food colouring. Shake it up and watch the glitter fall.

• Musical toys – Fill rice in an empty water balloon, create a drum from a milo tin, the possibilities are endless!

• Smell scavenger hunt – Go on a scavenger hunt using your nose. Smell flowers, grass, the spices in the pantry etc.

Cook with your kids – Experiment with tastes and textures.



Most people think of sensory play as ‘messy’ play or exploration of different textures but it is much more than that. Sensory play includes activities that involve touch, hearing, vision, smell and taste, as well as movement.

Sensory play promotes exploration of the environment and also helps build important connections in the brain. These help children to make sense of incoming sensory information. This is important for developing attention and self-regulation skills.

You will notice that many baby toys and books are colourful and have different textures or noises that can be elicited by exploration. For older children paint, sand, rice, slime and play dough are always popular. Musical instruments are great for all ages to explore and in addition to the sounds, involve different skills such as blowing, striking, shaking and pushing buttons.

Nature play is full of different smells, textures, colours and sounds that you can explore with your child. Children also love to play with food and participate in cooking experiences which allows exploration of multiple senses.


Although edible, these recipes are made for play, not for your plate.

Edible Gluten-Free No Bake Play Dough
By Fun at Home with Kids funathomewithkids.com

1 cup baby rice cereal
1 cup gluten-free cornflour
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Unsweetened applesauce
Food colouring (optional)
Combine 1 cup of baby rice cereal and 1 cup of cornflour.
Add ½ cup unsweetened applesauce, 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil and any food colouring (if desired).
Knead until mixture is smooth and pliable. If it’s too sticky, add more baby rice cereal and knead again. If too dry, wet hands and run your hands through the dough.
Store in a sealed container or bag in the refrigerator.

Edible Finger Paints
By Learning for Kids learning4kids.net
4 tablespoons of corn flour
Cold water
1 cup of boiling water
Liquid food colouring
In a saucepan, mix cornflour with cold water to make a paste.
Pour 1 cup boiling water and stir out the lumps.
Heat mixture over medium heat until you notice
clear streaks forming in the mixture. Turn off
heat and continue stirring until mixture has a
custard-like consistency.
Spoon equal amounts into empty jars and add 3 drops of food colouring to each mixture.