Nobody loves making a mess with kids more than I do. “Getting your hands dirty” can be SO fun and I love all the sensory benefits kids get from playing with textures. But, there are days when even I need a mess-free activity for my toddler! Here are 8 mess-free sensory activities for toddlers that you and your kiddo will both enjoy – my personal favorite is the Sensory Bags!
Sensory Bags for Kids from Growing a Jeweled Rose. I made this last week and already had most of the ingredients on hand. Just in case, I double-bagged mine and reinforced with clear packing tape. We have these up on a special shelf that only Mom can reach, which makes them a more special activity for the kids! I put bugs in one of mine.
Peek-a-Boo Sensory Board by Motherhood and Other Adventures. This is so creative! It may take some advance planning to save up your wipe-container tops, but well worth it. All the textures are so interesting for toddlers who are exploring their environment.
Discovery Bottles from The Imagination Tree. A lot like sensory bags, these will also make noise if you use larger, plastic items. Great for calming down fussy babies too.
Color Sorting with Pasta by Nurture Store Creative Kids Learning. This has a how-to guide for dyeing your own pasta, to make this a super cheap activity to promote color-matching!
Tactile Balloons by Little Bins for Little Hands. These balloons are good for older toddlers and preschoolers – great hands-on way to feel different textures. I always find it interesting which ones each kid prefers! And finding multi-colored balloons is simple so this is an easy project.
Toddler-Safe Foam Dough by Powerful Mothering. Toddlers will always put things in their mouths. It’s inevitable! Try this foam dough – not totally mess-free maybe, but safe for curious mouths.
Gluten-Free, Edible Playdough by Fun at Home with Kids. We have several gluten-free kiddos in our play group, and it’s nice to have this on hand so no one has to worry about getting a sick kiddo. Plus, playdough is great for so many activities!
Looking for more sensory activities? Check out our post How to Make a Sensory Toy for baby!