3 Sensory Activities for Kids of ALL Ages

By now, you’ve probably heard about the importance of sensory activities for kids. Sensory activities, or activities that engage a child’s senses – taste, touch, smell, sight, hearing - are known to build neural connections in the brain’s pathways. This helps kiddos learn and develop the ability to complete increasingly complex tasks. If you’ve spent any amount of time going down the Pinterest rabbit hole looking for children’s activities, you’ve inevitably found a million and one options for sensory play, sensory bins, etc.

Don’t let that overwhelm you – especially if you have kids of multiple ages! No one wants to spend their morning setting up 3 different sensory stations on your back porch. You CAN find sensory activities that ALL your kids will enjoy, from toddlers to elementary school-aged kids. And they’re easy! Set up a sensory activity for your kids, and you might even get 5 minutes to do something else you’ve been meaning to do.

Here are 3 easy sensory activities for kids of all ages to enjoy:

1. Legos!

Did you know that Legos and Duplo’s are a sensory activity?? They help kids develop fine motor skills and require visual and spatial skills! Just make sure the size is right for your kiddo – if you have a child that puts objects in their mouth, Duplo’s are the thing for you.


2. Slime/Edible slime

Hear me out – I know it’s messy. And slightly annoying. But I tell you what, my middle schooler still loves slime! She has a friend who actually makes and sells slime to her friends. I’m not sure about that business plan, but slime is definitely entertaining for toddlers through middle schoolers, apparently. AND you can find no less than one bajillion recipes online for different types of slime – edible slime, jungle slime, fluffy slime, you name it. The different textures make for a different sensory activity every time! Here’s my favorite recipe (mainly because it doesn’t require borax):

child playing on mat

Photo Credit: @katqe

3. Water Play

Water play works great for all ages because you can easily change up the activity based on the age of your kiddo. Added bonus: SUPER easy clean-up. Just keep some towels nearby.

For babies, you pour a half-inch to an inch of water in a cookie sheet that has sides. Add a few plastic toys to the tray, and your baby will enjoy splashing and exploring the tray. Another fun water idea for babies is filling a gallon-sized Ziploc bag with water and a few small toys/objects inside. You can duct tape the bag to your floor if you have a surface that allows for that, or you can just set your baby up within reach of the bag. This allows your baby to engage multiple senses at the same time. 

child playing with ball in play yard

For toddlers to older kids, the possibilities are endless! Fill up a tub or kiddie pool with water and put anything in it – toys, sponges, paintbrushes, cups, funnels, anything! They can pour and measure until their hearts are content. On a nice day, they can paint with water on the sidewalk! Fill up a spray bottle to squirt each other. Make “water bombs” made of cut up sponges. Fill up water balloons or add water beads to your tub. If you’re really feeling adventurous, add food coloring to the water or colored frozen ice cubes to the water! Seriously…SO. MANY. OPTIONS.

So – if you are stuck at home (who isn’t these days?), hope these easy sensory activities for kids help get you through the day with your kiddos! Solidarity, mamas.

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