Sensory boxes are great for kids (adults too!) of all ages and can be tailored to any interest! They are perfect for when you need a quick, easy, and fun activity that is also calming.
I love how versatile sensory boxes are and the endless possibilities for what you can put in them. Here are just a few ideas to get you started.
Sensory Box Ideas
I will share some sensory box ideas that I’ve created for my daughter. You can customize it in any way you wish, depending on the child’s interests and needs.
Picking Your Sensory Box Container
Before you start, you need to pick the right container. I like containers that have lids since they are easier to store or even travel with. But you can also use open containers, like the cute little caddies.
I like the one below as it’s easy to carry for little ones and closes perfectly. It’s a great size and you can fit a lot of sensory tools & toys. This particular box is only $4 at Dollarama (a Dollar store in Canada).
Fill Your Box
I’ll share with you some sensory items you could use to fill your sensory box. It’s important to find things that stimulate the senses but also take into consideration the interest of the child.
1 – Fidgets
Fidgets are amazing and for the most part, affordable for all. You can find them at pretty much any store or even the dollar store!
2 – Stress Balls
This is one of my favorite tools as an adult. I love stress balls. My daughter loves them too. You can get a few with different textures. Some feel like a cloud, some are harder and great for more deep-pressure work.
3 – Sensory Sand
You can add a small container of sensory sand (kinetic sand, moon sand, etc) to your sensory box. You can make your own or you can buy some at the store.
4 – Putty & Play Dough
Putty is my ultimate relaxation tool. My daughter loves to squish play dough. We both enjoy playing with play dough together. It’s so relaxing.
5 – Sensory Timers
Sensory timers are a great tool for your box as it’s very visual and it has a mesmerizing effect.
6 – Puzzle/Brain Teasers
Puzzles and brain teasers are great tools to help a child regulate as they focus on a specific activity.
7 – Calming Coloring Pages
Think of how calming it is to color a mandala. Some kids find it very calming as well.
8 – Sensory Bottles
I love that you can make your own sensory bottles and add them to a sensory box. You can customize them to the interests of the child.
9 – Legos/Building Blocks
Playing with building blocks can be a very calming activity for most kids. It helps them regulate as they focus hard on the activity.
10 – Chew Tools
If the child needs buccal stimulation, I would recommend adding safe chew tools to their box.
11 – Books
You can add books that are sensory like the touch & feel books or any kind of books they may like.
Some Sensory Box Ideas
Here are a few sensory box ideas, in various containers, to give you some inspiration.
In this first bigger box, you have a sensory book where the child can trace the numbers on each page. You also have a Magic Color Pad. We have some finger fun with Play Dough and some Crazy Aaron Putty.
I also added a few fidgets – a bubble popper and some stretchy noodles. Last but not least, a ball puzzle.
In this next box, I used a smaller box with a handle. As you can see we can still create a very good sensory box even if it’s smaller.
I added a sensory timer, a small play dough container, 2 fidgets, a spikey stretch ball and some wikki stix.
The next sensory box I used a pencil case from the dollar store. I added a few fidgets, a smaller tin of Crazy Aaron Putty, and some legos! I love the small plates that you can find at the dollar store. They are perfect for this type of box.
What is a Sensory Box?
A sensory box is simply a box filled with various sensory items that can be used to stimulate the senses. These boxes are great for kids who need a little extra sensory input or for those who are just seeking a calm and relaxing activity. They are often used as a tool for sensory breaks, transitions, regulation, and so much more.
What is a Sensory Box Used For?
You can use sensory boxes for a variety of purposes. They are great for promoting calm and focus, but can also be used for exploring different textures, smells, and sounds. Sensory boxes are also an excellent way to engage the senses and provide proprioceptive input.
What Do You Put in a Sensory Box?
You can fill a sensory box with any tool, toy, or material you think would be fun and engaging with some sensory benefits. Some of my favorite things to include are putty or play dough, stress balls, water bubble timers, fidgets, sensory bottles, brainteaser puzzles, etc.
What Age Are Sensory Boxes For?
Sensory boxes are great for any age, as long as you include items that are age appropriate to ensure the safety of the kids.
I’ll leave you with one last tip. Make sure to always modify the sensory boxes over time in order to keep the child’s attention. I hope you found this article helpful and inspiring to build your sensory boxes!
Please note that this is not intended to be medical advice. If you have any concerns about your child’s development, please consult with a doctor or occupational therapist.