Alphabet Sensory Bin; The ABC’s Of How To Make One

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!

alphabet sensory bin for preschoolers

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.)

alphabet pasta

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.

how to dye alphabet pasta for sensory bin

Pour them into your sensory bin and allow them to dry.

letter sensory bin

I put the colored letter noodles in pretty rainbow stripes to start with. Why not?

rainbow striped letter noodle sensory bin

alphabet pasta sensory bin

alphabet sensory bin for preschoolers

It doesn’t last long in rainbow stripes, but the kids do get a kick out of mixing it up!

alphabet sensory bin letter a

The abc pasta is so pretty in rainbow colors! You can see how super tiny they are in this picture.

abc pasta alphabet sensory bin for preschoolers

Here is our well-loved sensory bin for the letter A:

letter a sensory bin

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, finger puppet 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

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Comments

  1. Shannon @ Distracted by Prayer says

    Can’t wait to try this for my preschool class! Thinking about doing a Thanksgiving or Christmas theme.

  2. This is absolutely the best idea, Lacy! I love this.
    So i found the ABC pasta (mine was in the gluten free section – no regular ABCpasta).
    I bought the bin and i’m just beginning to collect the objects to go in it.
    This is for my 2 year old grand daughter.
    I love St. Ann in there. I have a small Infant of Prague to put in – not sure if it will be in I or P.
    i’m concerned about little fingers becoming stained from the dye then getting all over everything, but it just looks so cool i’m going to risk it and watch carefully.
    Your blog is fabulous. I forward topics to my daughter, but she has her hands full with 2 under 2 (you remember that) so i take an active step to bring your blog alive for them.
    Thank you for all your wonderful ideas and sharing your beautiful family with us.
    You are in my prayers.

    • I’ve never had a problem with hands turning colors, and I’ve had colored sensory bins for years. I suppose it’s possible if you used too much food color, or maybe if it got wet again? As long as it’s dry, it doesn’t seem to be a problem. Have fun! 🙂

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