Hi friends! How many of you have a sensory table? Or maybe you want to have one, but don’t know what to do with it. Well today’s post is all about Creating a Purposeful Sensory Table Station. I hope it answers some of your questions and gives you some ideas on how to use it in your classroom!
What is a Sensory Table?
A container filled with substances/materials that encourage exploration and use of a child’s senses…except for taste. It also encourages learning and in a kindergarten classroom, can incorporate academics and specific skills. Here a few options from Amazon. (affiliate link)
Here is a DIY version from A Teaching Momma, that you could make for your classroom.
Have little to no space for a sensory table? Use simple bins with lids to create individual or partner bins. Just make sure that you always have a lid for your bins, so to keep out bugs/critters, as well as keep the materials inside and safe.
What You Need for a Sensory Table Station
- Table or bin
- Academic feature
- magnetic letters
- letter cards
- beginning sound cards
- cvc words
- Again, the academic ideas for this station are endless and abundant!
What to Teach Students About this Station
- How to use tools & supplies
- Expectations for activities
- All materials stay INSIDE of sensory table/bin
- Materials may be touched and smelled, but DO NOT GO IN MOUTHS
- No throwing or shaking materials at friends or yourself
- Determine any rules/procedures you feel are necessary to this station
- How to clean up
What Students Do at the Sensory Table Station
- Find and identify letters
I usually keep the same materials in this station for 2-3 months, since we are still learning letter names and sounds. Students scoop up letters and then color them on their response sheet. I have uppercase and lowercase response sheets, as well as letters. Station can be differentiated by students creating simple words or sight words with the letters.
I change my station up in January to include white rock salt, to act as ‘snow’ and include my snowy sight words.I also like to change it up around Spring time and add Easter grass and plastic eggs with sight words. I have a free sight word recording sheet to go with this too. You can read about it here and download the free recording sheet.
My sensory bin is strictly for my literacy stations rotations, but I am sure you could use it for math as well. Do you have ideas that you use for your sensory bins? I would love to hear about them. Please leave a comment or find me on my social media channels and leave a note!!
Have you been following along with our 31 Days of Kindergarten posts?
You can check them out here: