5 Fun Sensory Play Activities for Toddlers

1. **Finger Painting**

Finger painting is a classic sensory activity that toddlers adore. It allows them to explore colors and textures while improving their fine motor skills. To set up a finger painting session, you'll need washable, non-toxic finger paints and a large sheet of paper or a disposable tablecloth. Spread out the paint on a palette, and let your toddler dip their fingers in and create their masterpieces. You can even add different textures by mixing sand or glitter into the paint for an extra sensory experience.

2. **Sensory Bins**

Sensory bins are versatile and easy to put together. Fill a plastic container with various materials like rice, pasta, beans, or water beads. Add toys, small scoops, and cups for your toddler to explore and manipulate. Sensory bins provide an opportunity for tactile exploration and help toddlers develop their hand-eye coordination and problem-solving skills. You can customize the sensory bin based on your toddler's interests—think dinosaurs, farm animals, or sea creatures!

3. **Playdough Play**

Playdough is a fantastic medium for sensory play. You can buy it from the store or make your own using simple ingredients. The squishy texture of playdough engages a toddler's sense of touch and encourages creativity. Provide various tools like rolling pins, cookie cutters, and plastic knives to enhance their fine motor skills. Additionally, you can add scents or natural materials like lavender or small flower petals to stimulate their sense of smell.

4. **Water Play**

Water play is an excellent way for toddlers to explore their sense of touch and engage in sensory learning. You can set up a small plastic pool or a water table in your backyard or even use a large basin indoors. Fill it with water and offer various containers, cups, and toys for your toddler to splash, pour, and experiment with. You can also make water play more exciting by adding food coloring for a colorful twist or plastic ice cubes for a sensory surprise.

5. **Texture Walk**

Take your toddler on a texture walk in your home or yard. Encourage them to touch different surfaces and objects, such as grass, sand, leaves, tree bark, or even kitchen items like a soft sponge or a rough scrubbing brush. Describe the textures to them as they explore, helping them develop their sense of touch and vocabulary. A texture walk not only stimulates their senses but also introduces them to the wonders of the world around them.


Sensory play is a fantastic way for toddlers to learn, grow, and have a great time while doing it. These five sensory play activities—finger painting, sensory bins, playdough play, water play, and texture walks—offer a wide range of sensory experiences that can be tailored to your toddler's preferences and developmental stage. As you engage in these activities together, you'll not only be fostering their sensory development but also creating cherished memories that will last a lifetime. So, roll up your sleeves and dive into the world of sensory play with your little one today!


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