For 6 years now, I have taught Catholic ABC’s to my preschoolers where we cover 1 letter each week. For extra fun this year, we’ve added a letter sensory bin to our ABC repertoire . Given my weaving the faith theory, I like to mix religious items with non-religious items. Check it out!
In Catholic ABC’s, I go over how to use a “grab bag” during circle time. This happens each week when you introduce a new letter. The kids love this, and in my 5 years experience in doing this, the grab bag is almost always the favorite part of circle time!
It does take some time to round these objects up, and I wanted a little more “bang” for my time-input “buck”, so I started a letter sensory bin where we switch out the objects each week with the objects from our current grab bag. The girls absolutely love this tiny sensory bin! It’s very manageable because it just goes on a table top, and gets put away with a lid when we’re not using it. We use it the same as we do our rainbow drawer hands-on activities.
It makes my creative brain very happy to do adorable stuff, so I got actual letter shaped pasta to use as the filler for our alphabet sensory bin. You can get this stuff in the pasta aisle of regular grocery stores. It also has numbers mixed in. (Some plain white rice would work just as well.)
I got 4 bags of alphabet noodles for our bin, which is a little bigger than a shoe box. You only need filler in the bottom 2 inches or so.
How to make the noodles pretty colors: Fill a sandwich baggie about 1/2 full with the noodles. Add a few squirts of hand-sanitizer (or rubbing alcohol), just enough to make the noodles damp, and add a squirt of food coloring. Zip the bag shut and shake it until the noodles are all the same color.
Pour them into your sensory bin and allow them to dry.
I put the colored letter noodles in pretty rainbow stripes to start with. Why not?
It doesn’t last long in rainbow stripes, but the kids do get a kick out of mixing it up!
The abc pasta is so pretty in rainbow colors! You can see how super tiny they are in this picture.
Here is our well-loved sensory bin for the letter A:
In The Bin:
Angel, alligator, A from magic alphabet set, alligator water gun, St. Anne (we laminated her before assembling, and she held up to the sensory bin very well! The kids use her as a scoop for the noodles), apple armor, alien head, angel.
Every once in awhile, some of the noodles spill and it’s a little bit of a mess. That’s what our small broom and dust pan is for. The kids clean it up on their own. If you’re looking for ideas to incorporate hands-on fun in your home without going crazy, I encourage you to take a peek of how this works at our house.
Be sure to check out my resource page for Catholic ABC’s here.
- Nativity Sensory Bin
- How to incorporate hands-on activities at home
- Alphabet Saints
- Alphabet Bible Crafts
- Alphabet Catholic Crafts
- Alphabet Scripture Verse Cards (free to print!)
- Introducing Preschoolers To Letters