Why I Made Back to School Learning Bins
I created two bins to share along with I Spy sheets for each bin. The children and parents had a blast digging through the bins to find the objects JDaniel and I had hidden. They had fun finding the objects and they also enjoyed re-hiding them.
Some parents were already working with sensory bins at home. Many were excited about trying them at home. Once I explained how I introduce learning skills through questions as we explore bins, they were really excited.
General Questions to Ask After Exploring Bins
- Can you tell me about the object’s shape?
- What color is the object?
- What is sound does the object start with?
- What is another word that starts with that letter?
- Can you find an object that is smaller than this one?
- We found three paper clips. What object is there more of in the bin?
- What vowel sounds do you hear in the object’s name?
What I Put in the Bins
Into the Letter and Number Back to School Bin I put letter and number cookie cutters we have used in in the kitchen. (We happened to have letter and number cookie cutter, but you could easily use letters and numbers from a puzzle, a magnet set, cut out from magazines, noodles or a foam bath play set.)
Then I made a worksheet titled Alphabet Sensory Bin Hunt. The worksheet contained all of the alphabet letters and the numbers 1-9. (I guess the worksheet should have been titled Letter and Number Sensory Bin Hunt. Ooops! I will redo it if I get to share the bins again.)
The goal was for the children to find each of the letters and numbers and cross them off as they worked.
I made an I Spy School Supply sheet that featured collage of school supplies that I made on PicMonkey. It was super easy to place pictures the school supplies into the collage and insert it into a Word document.
What school supplies went into the bin?
- a marker (taped shut)
- an empty glue stick
- a penguin pencil sharpener
- three index cards
- five pencil top erasers
- three paper clips
- a ruler
- two pencils
- a pencil pouch
- brass fasteners
- a paint brush
I wasn’t sure what to put in the school supply bin. I really struggled with what would be safe and kids friendly. Members of the Kid Blogger Network Facebook Group shared their wonderful ideas with me . Kristin of Sense of Wonder shared a link to her Back to School Bin during that discussion. Her bin featured the Eye Spy Chart that my I Spy sheet was based. While both my bin and I Spy sheet look different from her’s I think it important to share that the post on Sense of Wonder inspired this post.