After playing with our water beads earlier this week, and seeing how much Lorelai enjoyed it, I was inspired to make some rice sensory bins. I took it a step further and made “Habitat Bins” – not sure if that term has ever been used, but I’m using it! =) I found some pretty awesome themed containers at Toys R Us last weekend and thought it would be fun to make scenes inside of boxes. Let me tell you, it was a HIT. We laid on Lorelai’s floor and played with each one for over an hour.
Starting off, it was all about playing with the animals – much like we play with barbies. The animals could talk and we put them in different scenarios, had them rescue each other, etc. I found some dinosaur skeletons at the Dollar Tree. We buried those and had her barbie archeologists discover them in the “sand”. After Lore was tired of playing that, I got out the measuring cups and jars and she had a blast just playing. She transferred the rice, dug her hands in, and poured. That inspired a round of “Bake Shop” in which she made me blueberry (and watermelon) cheesecake and endless muffins. I wish I had gotten more pictures!
So, the boxes we did were simple – blue rice with ocean animals, and green rice with dinosaurs. I quickly dyed the rice (SO EASY!) and we immediately started playing.
To Dye Rice – Pour your rice into a bowl, add a squirt of rubbing alcohol, and some food coloring. Mix, mix, mix until all of the rice is colored. That’s it!
So there you have it – Rice Sensory Habitats. It’s imaginative play and sensory play all in one little container. Oh and speaking of containers, ours are from Target (6 qt). I wish they were a tad bit bigger, but they worked out pretty well.
Note: Food coloring stains. Until your rice is 100% dry, there might be a little bit of coloring on your child’s hands. Just make sure you wash up after playing!