Sensory crafts are a great way to engage your child’s senses. Toddlers love to get messy and learn through sensory play! Grown-ups love them too as they are very easy to put together.
I love to find new ways to include sensory play in our everyday activities. These sensory crafts will engage your child’s imagination, work on some developmental skills and provide hours of fun! As Author MaryAnn Kohl’s says “Children gain useful life skills through art, so encourage them to get creative, and you will quickly see children picking up skills in communication, problem-solving, social and emotional, fine motor, self-expression and creativity.”.
Give these toddler sensory crafts a try:
1 – Bubble Wrap Painting:
All you need for this sensory craft is bubble wrap, a rolling pin, paint, a piece of paper/cardboard/cardstock (whatever you have on hand!) and some tape. Roll the piece of bubble wrap around the rolling pin and secure with tape. Drop dots of paint on your “canvas” and let them roll! Bubble Wrap Roller Art in the making.
2 – Draw with Cars
I love this activity! So simple to do, but your child will love this new experience. You will need a toy car, a pencil/marker/crayon, tape and a drawing paper. Tape your drawing tool of choice at the front of the car. Let them roll around to draw their masterpieces!
3 – Shaving Cream Bag
Mess free art anyone? YES! A color mixing sensory bag is a great way to engage your child in sensory play without the fear of mess or ingestion. You will need shaving cream, tempera paint (you could also use food coloring) and ziploc bags. Add shaving cream to the bag(s). Then pour a bit of paint of various colors in different spots. Let them squish the bag to their heart’s delight!
4 – Ice Cube Painting
This activity will require a bit more planning ahead as you will need to freeze the “paint” ahead of time. You’ll get the best results if the cubes are frozen for 12 hours+. You will need an ice cube tray, water, food coloring and some sticks. See a cool way to use some water paint from Crayola in the video below.
5 – Canvas in a Bag
Decorate your home with your child’s masterpieces! I love sensory crafts that are messy but sometimes it’s nice to have peace of mind. Grab a small canvas, a Ziploc bag, and some paint. Insert the canvas into the Ziploc bag first. Then squirt some paint (a few colors is best) on the canvas. Close it tight (add tape if you want to secure it). Let your child rub their hands all over to create a masterpiece! Once completed, take it out and let it dry. You might be pleasantly surprised by the outcome.
A slight variation – You could also use saran wrap over the canvas instead of using a Ziploc bag.
6 – DIY Rainstick
This sensory craft is really fun for all kids. Not only are you making a craft, you’re also making a sensory toy that you can use after! To make this DIY Rainstick, you will need: a paper roll, some rice/beans/sprinkles/dry pasta (whatever you have on hand!), foil and tape. I would also add markers to decorate the rainstick or even stickers. Stickers are great for sensory play!
7 – Finger Paint
This finger paint is so fun and it’s actually TASTE-SAFE! You don’t have to worry if ever your little one decides to take a lick of those colorful fingers. This edible finger paint recipe requires the following ingredients – cornstarch, sugar, water, and some food coloring. Easy peasy!
8 – Handprint Dough
Make some handprint memories with your kids with this better than salt dough recipe! No need to bake this dough as it hardens as it air dries. Once dry, let the kids paint their handprints, footprints, or any shape they’ve created! All you need for this recipe is – Cornstarch, baking soda, and water. I love how simple this is.
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