beach treasures sensory bin

A beach has the best collection of loose parts for playing with and exploring.

It makes complete sense, to take loose parts found at the beach, and put them into a sensory bin. For times that you can't get to the beach.

The sensory bin base was a beach find.

My husband, daughter and I were walking a beach trail on the west coast of Vancouver Island in Canada, and came upon a beach of broken up shells and rocks. I loved the colour and texture. My husband rolled his eyes, and said that we had no way to get a sensory bin's worth of the beach home with us. He underestimated me! I filled my raincoat with the beach shells/rocks, wrapped it all up, and carried it in my backpack for the rest of the hike. Yup, it was heavy.  I earned my treat at the end of our walk. Zoe's Bakery in Ucluelet is amazing!

My daughter and husband decided to be helpful and find me good driftwood, shells and beach rocks to add to the bin. They gleefully added them to my backpack!

(I am lucky enough to live close to beaches. If I did not have access to the beach, decorative sand could work too.)

A visit to a tourist shop that sold "beach stuff" resulted in more bits and pieces for the bin.

mini sand dollars


sea urchin shells

I made some First Nations art sea creature glass gems to add another texture and social dimension to the bin. 

My school district's Aboriginal Education department develops Coast Salish clipart that they make available for anyone to use for educational and non-profit use. 

A glass jar, shovel and sea blue marbles that were in my collection of stuff that I am unwilling to get rid of completed the bin. 

Just like at the beach, the kids collected treasures,



and told lots and lots of stories.

My favourite comment was - you mean, everything in here is real?!?

When the weather is cold and dreary, we can take our our sensory bin, and spend a day at the beach.



  1. That is so cool! I love the way you always do such authentic sensory bins and it sounds like a great family activity in collecting the items for it. :)

    Not Just Child's Play

  2. Wow it's beautiful! And I love your perseverance :)

  3. This is a wonderful bin and so fitting with your location. I am inspired!!


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