Christmas Sensory Bin

Our Christmas Sensory Bin was a huge hit last year and this year it will be almost exactly the same. 

It starts with a base of simple red and green items mostly.  Each day I add in one small feature.  Day 1 was bells, day 2 was mini trees, day 3 was mini lights.  I have tons of tiny items {almost all from Michaels or AC Moore} and will add in items daily until Christmas.  They love the suspense and seeing something new each day.



One of the games we have enjoyed this year is a listening game.  We choose a few items… IMG_7791and then put one in the can for someone to shake and guess which item it is.IMG_7790


Another game is to put 1-5 items in a stocking and feel to figure out what is inside, finding matching objects in the bin.  Pac likes this one.IMG_7797


Ladybug and Krash love to go on an item hunt, finding all of the same thing.  IMG_7840

This time they were on a hunt for the mini lights.



Just a few days in and the bin has received a lot of attention.  It is a simple and fun way to bring in so many learning skills and so much imaginative play.  Totally Tots shared another great idea for a Christmas Sensory bin also, be sure to check it out!

If you haven’t read the Montessori Minute post about sensory play, be sure to read that to see why these bins are so wonderful for kids!  See aBehind the Scenes look at Sensory Bin play with videos here!

Use this button to jump to all of my Sensory Bin posts anytimeimage

Did you miss the rest of my 12 Days of Christmas posts?  Here they are for easy access…

  1. Advent Adventures in Homeschool
  2. Christmas Around the World Calendar Connections
  3. Nativity Printable Pack
  4. 12 Days of Christmas Printables
  5. Busy Hands Play Dough Box and Christmas Play Dough
  6. Truth in the Tinsel
  7. The Birth of Jesus Study & Giveaway
  8. Christmas Book Printables
  9. Christmas Gifts For Jesus
  10. Christmas Fun Notebooks
  11. Christmas Theme Printables and More


I have enjoyed participating in a 12 Days of Christmas blogging series along with 7 other bloggers, see more 12 Days of Christmas posts using the links below…

Christmas Theme Printables & More

I am gathering a wide collection of free printables within certain themes. In order to better organize these online, I have created theme blog posts for the themes I have created many printables for!  Links to these pages in the top navigational bar labeled “Theme Printables” so you can jump to them easily.


In this post, I will direct you to the page where the file is hosted on my website or blog, since they are in various places! I hope this helps you find things within themes! I will try to gather anything I have done, created, or posted about surrounding this theme. Slowly I am adding more blog posts like this to help you find everything for the major themes we have done and will do.

Christmas Around the World Calendar Connections


Jesse Tree Calendar Connections, eBook, and ornaments


Christmas Sensory Bin


Nativity Printable Pack


10 Days of Christmas Fun 2010


Christmas Learning Fun ~ Day 1

Christmas Learning Fun ~ Day 2

Christmas Learning Fun ~ Day 3

Christmas Learning Fun ~ Day 4

Christmas Learning Fun ~ Days 5, 6, & 7

Christmas Learning Fun ~ The End!

Christmas Tot Pack


Christmas ABCornamentsChristmas Candy Cane PatternChristmas Candy CanesChristmas Counting StockingsChristmas Jesus Dot Paint

Christmas Jesus PuzzleChristmas MatchingChristmas Merry ChristmasChristmas Positional WordsChristmas Tree Sorting

Christmas Songs


Christmas Alphabet Tracers


Color By Shape


Christmas Fun Notebooks


Christmas Symbols Lapbook

~ this is several years old and has not been updated, if you choose to use it, you’ll have to adjust it since the website I originally linked to with info has been taken down.  I hope to update this for next year, just didn’t get around to it this year!


Christmas Bible Verse


Raising Rock Stars Family Nights ~ Christmas Theme

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Christmas Book Story Props



Christmas Play Dough


Christmas Tree Crayons


12 Days of Christmas Printables


Christmas Gift Ideas

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Christmas Books & More…


Are you on Pinterest?


You can check out my Christmas Finds here!

12 Days of Christmas ~ Christmas Fun Notebooks

I made my children some Christmas Fun Notebooks for them to work through over the next few weeks.  The idea stemmed from Ladybug’s Tot Time Notebook, but I thought the boys might like a special notebook too and I was right! Christmas Activity Notebooks

I filled each child’s notebook {1/2” 3 ring binder} with fun activities based on their skill level and interests. I use heavy weight sheet protectors and only Expo dry erase markers and everything erases with very little effort-even Ladybug can erase her own notebook.  I made a pdf file of the image on the cover in various stocking colors for you to download if you’d like to use it also!  Just pick a color for each child, print and write in their name {or have the child write their own name}.

Download Stocking Covers here!

Ladybug’s has the A-Z Christmas sheets, and a few pages from the Nativity Printable PackChristmas Activity Notebooks

Christmas Activity Notebooks

I printed loads of fun worksheets from Activity Village for Krash and Pac Man, also some from Family Fun.  The boys love mazes so many of those! You can see many of the sheets I printed pinned on my Christmas pinterest board!

Specifically for Krash, I prepared a few of the wonderful games from Walking by the Way’s holiday game packs.  I put them in his notebook so he can flip through and choose one for us to play!  He also has several sheets form the Nativity Printable Pack.Christmas Activity Notebooks

These notebooks have gone over VERY well, and took little effort to create.  I may be using this concept more with themes in the future for the little 2.  Much cheaper than laminating and printing over and over again!


I am participating in a 12 Days of Christmas blogging series along with 7 other bloggers, see more 12 Days of Christmas posts using the links below…

12 Days of Christmas ~ Christmas Book Printables

We have a few favorite Christmas books, I shared 10 of them here. Reading is one of our favorite things, especially at Christmas time when these wonderful books come out of hiding for their special month on display!  I chose a few of our favorite books and made some story prop printables to use in retelling and while reading.  My kids, all 3 of them, love when we use story props.

Here are the 3 books I chose, you can click on them to see more about each on Amazon  Under each book are the story props included in each set, you’ll need to download the pdf files here on the website.  I used real photos when possible, especially of animals!


Bear Stays Up Bookimage


One Baby Jesus Bookimage


My Merry Christmas Bookimage

You can use any printables from other printable packs as story props too, just print out the 3 part card pages and trim around the images.  Most of Homeschool Creation’s packs have a specific book to go along!

Download the Story Props for these 3 Christmas books here!


I am participating in a 12 Days of Christmas blogging series along with 7 other bloggers, see more 12 Days of Christmas posts using the links below…

The Busy Hands Play Dough Box

Busy Hands Play Dough Box

I haven’t always made my own play dough, but this past year I have.  Thanks to a wonderful play dough recipe {I got permission from the original author to share the recipe with my readers, find a printable too!}  that even a non-cook like me can handle and remember, I have made several batches and my children are oh-so-thankful.


Of course, I had to pull out some Christmas-y play dough.  But why stop with just play dough?  My organizational freak of a brain got going and came up with a little solution to our play dough playing dilemma.

Dilemma # 1 ~ dragging out the play dough tools and remembering to clean it all up and put it all back.

Dilemma #2 ~ remembering to add in my themed dough cutters when we switch themes/holidays.

Dilemma #3 ~ “Mommy, I can’t get the baggie open, {top off of the play doh}.”


Solution…The Busy Hands Box!



I had this awesome box, and put it to work.  I made a space for our tools and also spaces for our current play dough {a home made batch usually lasts us about a month}.  The box lid shuts tight and seals so the play dough stays fresh, but each individual color doesn’t have to be in a separate {and difficult for a 2 year old to open} container/baggie.


You can surprise your kids for Christmas, give one as a gift, or just make your own life a bit better by organizing your own play dough supplies in a fun new way.  If you haven’t busted out some Christmas-y play dough, here’s some ideas to get your creative juices flowing.



  • Green ~ add green glitter & peppermint extract
  • Red ~ add red glitter and cinnamon or peppermint extract
  • White ~ add silver glitter and vanilla extract or French vanilla coffee cream powder gives it a nice sugar-cookie scent.
  • White ~ add red and green glitter…peppermint extract too!
  • Yellow ~ add almond extract and gold glitter

The scent is always a very big deal for my kids and this set was a big hit.  Notice Ladybug’s joy in her smelling…

IMG_7509  IMG_7503

As a special surprise, I added a new set of tools to the box for my kids, I got them this neat Melissa and Doug set and I am happy with it.


Additionally, in our box…



In case you like my box label, I made it in pdf form so you can use it too.  There are also 2 play dough alphabet pages, I laminated mine to keep with the box.  IMG_7492

Download the Busy Hands Box printables here!

Find our Play Dough Recipe here!

image_thumbI am participating in a 12 Days of Christmas blogging series along with 7 other bloggers, see more 12 Days of Christmas posts using the links below…