Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Tuesday Teachings - Sensory Bins

If you have spent any time looking online at parent or teacher blogs then you know that themed sensory bins are a huge phenomenon! I love them and would love to personally play in several of them. There are some amazing and creative people out there that are designing these sensory bins.

Sensory bins are great for extending a theme in your classroom or home. There are three types of learners:
Auditory - meaning that you learn through listening. Verbal lectures, discussions and listening to what others have to say are the most beneficial for this type of learner. Auditory listeners are great at picking up the meaning of the speaker through listening to the tone and pitch of the lecture.
Visual - meaning that they need to see something to learn it. Visual learners not only need videos, flip charts, illustrations and diagrams but they also learn through the body and facial expressions of the speaker.
Kinesthetic - meaning they need a more hands on approach for learning. These learners typically have a hard time sitting still for long periods listening to lectures. They need to see, feel, and touch items to process. They need to move around to learn.

All learning styles can benefit from sensory bins but a Kinesthetic learner will really prosper with a sensory bin.

I have scoured the web looking for some of my favorite summer themed sensory bins and have included links below.

First, I have to include Counting Coconuts Blog. She has some amazing bins and does one each month for her son.

Some other sources for Sensory Bins:

As you can see, there are some very creative bins out there. I will give you a few pointers though:

1) Make sure everything is age appropriate. If your child stills put everything in her mouth, be vigilant about the items you put in the bin.
2) Put cups, spoons, scoops or other items in the bins to let your child practice those skills.
3) Be prepared. Yes, it can get messy but we put down a cheap vinyl tablecloth and put the bin on top of that.
4) If you are afraid of huge messes, use some of the bins strictly outdoors.
5) It does not have to be expensive. Buy bins at the dollar store and supplies at the dollar store, goodwill, thrift stores or dollar spot at Target.

Read this article from Counting Coconuts about her FAQ on sensory bins. Have more questions? Post them below and we will answer them as soon as possible.

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