Here is my first attempt at a sensory bin play box for Joe! It’s a dinosaur land complete with foamy swap, beach, rocky terrain, cave and snowy mountain!The beach is made of lentils, the snow is flour, the rocky terrain is pebbles from the garden which I sterilised and the spooky swamp is just washing up liquid and water whisked with a touch of baking powder.
The sensory box started as just a large deep roasting tin and a few plastic boxes from the recycling pile, the cave is an empty tub that had baking powder in (not pictured.)
I used some fake flowers for greenery and then mini toy dinosaurs for the role play. Pretty easy but quite effective!
Now, sensory play can get quite messy, so if playing outdoors is not an option make sure you play on wipe clean floors or put matting down, I put down large plastic bags and towels to protect the floor.
Joe appears to have some sensory problems, he doesn’t like getting dirty, he has problems with eating certain textures and only eats a very limited variety of foods, he doesn’t like touching things like foam or gloopy/slimy textures and he struggles with messy play wanting his hands to be wiped all the time. As a baby he never really went through the oral phase and was not one to put things in his mouth. He is also not keen on sand, dried rice and the feel of grass on his bare feet.
These sensory bins are an attempt to get him used to different textures and to overcome his fear of getting dirty. This is turn may help him with some of the textural aversion problems he has with food.
Initially he said he didn’t want to play with it, but after a bit of coaxing and watching me play and touch the different items he got braver. The swamp was a no go and as soon as the bubbles touched his skin he got very agitated and wanted to wash his hands, but he got his hands stuck in to the flour. He was much more receptive when I got a bowl of clean water for the dinosaurs to wash themselves in!
Overall it was a positive experience, these things take a long time but I will definitely try and do some more sensory boxes in the future!