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Friday, January 21, 2022

Valentine's Day Sensory Bin for Toddlers

My girls have always been little sensory seekers, which works well for me because I love any excuse to set up some sensory play for them! This is a really easy Valentine's themed sensory bin that we put together when my big girl was just a toddler {and I was heavily pregnant}. You can easily replicate it at home, or in the classroom, for some sensory fun with your kids.

valentines sensory bin for toddlers and preschoolers

This valentines day sensory bin was inspired by the book Spot Loves His Mum. The book is all about why Spot loves his mum and how his mum loves him too. It was a great segue to introduce a valentines activity that was centered around love.

If you want to read it too you can order Spot Loves His Mum from  Amazon AU {we have the board book version}. There's also an American version, Spot Loves His Mommy which can be ordered from  Amazon.

spot loves him mum and spot loves his mommy books

Adding in the book made a simple sensory bin idea into a really easy bookish play activity. However, you could just do the sensory tray without adding the book, or you could do it with any other valentines or love themed book as well.


spot loves his mum bookish play sensory bin
To set up our valentines sensory bin I simply grabbed a batch of red sensory rice we already had {recipe down below} and some pink and red toys and bits and pieces we had in the kitchen drawers. We ended up with shape playdough cutters, heart cookie cutters, pink spoons, red measuring cups, tweezers, pieces from our plan toys flower set and some abacus shape pieces. You can use anything you have at home, the main components you'll need are sensory rice, loose parts and scoops or spoons.


  • I cup white rice
  • Red food colouring
  • White vinegar
  • Ziplock bag
  • Baking paper
  • Tray


1. Put one cup of uncooked white rice into a ziplock bag.

2. Add in a few drops of red food colouring.

3. Add a bottle cap full of white vinegar.

4. Seal the bag and scrunch the rice around within the bag until all of the rice is evenly dyed.

5. Lay a piece of baking paper on a flat tray and pour the dyed rice onto the tray.

6. Leave the rice to dry for a few hours, or overnight until it's completely dry.

red sensory rice

My daughter loved playing with the sensory bin transferring the rice between the scoops and heart cutters. We also practiced naming shapes when pointing to the abacus shapes and shape cutters. She played with this set up for a good 40 minutes on and off throughout the day. Once she was done I packed up the red sensory rice and kept it in an airtight container so we could reuse it again {most of our sensory rice lasts for 2yrs or more}.
valentines day sensory bin


  • Shapes
  • Tactile & Visual Sensory Input 
  • Hand/eye co-ordination
  • Fine motor development
  • Imaginative play

valentines day sensory tray for toddlers


Disclosure - This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience, which means I may make a small commission at no cost to you, should you make a purchase.

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