Saturday, September 14, 2013

Transportation Sensory Bin

We borrowed The Scrubbly-Bubbly Car Wash by Irene O'Garden from the library. It's such a cute book with great illustrations. I made a car wash sensory bin that evolved a little and kept M very intrigued.

We started with an aluminum tub outfitted with a curtain of "fabric" (foam strips). I added clear water beads and shaving cream, and gave M some scoops, small cups, scrubbers, and a bunch of toy cars. She and her friends had an amazing time with this bin! M isn't really a messy kid, and it doesn't occur to her to splash the materials out of the tub, but I know this is not typical of toddlers. We had three friends over for a playdate, and this was a big hit. It was pretty messy, but the cleanup wasn't bad. Next time, I will either do this outside or put a tarp under the table.

The next day, I decided to switch out the shaving cream for some flubber. This was really interesting, because the flubber could be used to make tire tracks as the different cars drove over it. It was also fun to press the different scrubber brushes into the flubber to make impressions. M also realized that she could "hide" the water beads in the flubber to make little bumps for the cars to ride over. This was a lot less messy than the shaving cream!


The bin made one final appearance filled with water beads and water. This was a "keep M busy while I finish packing" activity, so my lack of attention made this the messiest by far (although M liked helping to clean up the water off the floor and table when she was done). I started with regular water, which made the clear water beads "disappear." M liked scooping the water and "invisible" water beads and dumping them over the cars. I gave her a small colander so she could pour the water and bead in to separate out the water beads.

Some of the water beads had a blue tint from being in the flubber, so I later added some blue food coloring to the water to see how that would look. The bluish beads disappeared, and the clear beads looked really cool in the blue water.


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  1. Love the car wash part of it! My nephew would love this. :) Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thanks! Everyone really had fun with this one :)