It’s that time of the month wherein I refresh my kids sensory kits and bring you along for the ride.
This month, we’re working on making rice sensory kits with a focus on Bugs and Blooms.
I selected these themes because my personal favorite children’s books are these really gorgeous books by Yuval Zommer.
These are the kinds of books that are artistically pleasing enough for a 3 year old to listen to that continue to grow with kiddos, so far I can affirm that these books are still just as relevant for my 7 3/4 year old. If you don’t have them, I highly recommend you grab anything from his collection, but for these sensory boxes, check out The Big Book of Bugs or The Big Book of Blooms.
To Dye Your Rice
Use 1 c. of Rice, 1 tsp. of vinegar, and a healthy squeeze of liquid food coloring. Put all of that in a large bowl or a ziploc and stir until color is evenly distributed. Dry by laying flat on a lipped cookie sheet and ‘baking’ at 200 for one hour.
Alternately, you can lay out the colored rice on paper towels and let dry overnight.
I use about 4 c. of rice per kit- which can be reused if you save it, I would love to tell you that I am this person, but I am not.
I set this kit up by using a high sided 12″ x 12″ plastic box- I find that this helps to keep the rice inside of the container. For my Blooms box, I added some fresh flowers and and wooden sensory play tools that I keep on hand and reuse. We’re working on letter identification over here, so I also made some quick letter flash cards for you to download if you’re so inclined.
Rice sensory kits are easily still in play up until age 8. One change I make for my big boy is that I add a set of measuring cups, we spend a good deal of time talking about how it takes four 1/4 c. to fill the 1 c. measure and so forth.
As a reference- my oldest will play in this for up to 30 minutes at a time, my youngest will play in this for up to an hour at a time.
I’ve been working on reading to them while they play. I think it’s been really good for their concentration to have something to do with their hands, and interestingly enough, it seems to help their recall abilities.
Also, if anyone knows how to convince a 5 year old to learn the actual name of letters as opposed to their phonetic sound…. Drop a comment. Asking for me. Send help.