How to Create a DIY Winter Wonderland Sensory Bin for Kids

Budget Friendly ways to Enrich, Entertain and Engage Your kids!

By Emily Papa, publisher of Macaroni Kid South Hills, Pa. January 6, 2024

Baby, it's cold outside, and your kids are yearning to bring the magic of the outdoors indoors. Look no further! Dive into the world of DIY with a captivating Winter Wonderland-themed sensory bin that promises to captivate little minds and keep tiny fingers happily occupied.

Crafting this Winter Wonderland sensory bin is not only a creative indoor escape but a fantastic way to ensure your kids stay engaged during chilly or wet days when outdoor play isn't an option. In fact, it's an ideal anytime activity that adds a sprinkle of excitement to your kids' indoor routine.

Ready to embark on this adventure? Let's get down to business with a straightforward DIY Winter Wonderland sensory bin. You might already have these supplies at home, or you can easily snag them from a nearby discount or craft store. The best part? It won't break the bank, making it a budget-friendly and enjoyable project for you and your little ones.

One of the beauties of sensory bins is their flexibility. Feel free to substitute any materials mentioned here with items you already have on hand. Better yet, add extra elements to enhance variety and keep your kids thoroughly entertained. Get ready to transform your living space into a magical Winter Wonderland, providing endless joy and sensory exploration for your children.

Please use caution when making sensory bins with smaller objects and always supervise, as younger children tend to put items in their mouths

I liked this particular simple combo for our Winter Wonderland sensory bin because of the fun reaction my kids had to the glass gems and the foam beads. 


  • A large shallow bin or container
  • Colored foam beads in white and blue
  • Blue and / or white glass accent gems
  • Blue and silver sequins

Simply dump the supplies in the bin one by one

Let your kiddo mix it all up and have at it! Have them bring some of their favorite toys to dig or play with in the bin.

We do have a rule when we play: everything must stay in the bin - no throwing, banging, high dumping, etc. and most times we have minimal cleanup. This bin got a little out of hand only because the snowboarder was pulling some gnarly tricks in the snow that resulted in my little man holding him above his head. Couple that with the fact that the foam is so light, it was a bit harder to contain.

This bin lasted us for over an hour of entertainment day one and we continued to pull it out over the course of 2 weeks. At that point, we recycled our bin contents into a glass mason jar and turned it into a snow globe!

Please note: because this particular bin calls for foam balls, there is a bit of a static component to it, making the balls cling slightly to objects and skin. My kids think that this is the coolest, but others may not. Because of that property, when you move the glass beads in the bin, they practically glide across the foam beads as if they were moving by themselves. This makes for a great conversation and my kids just love watching them move about the bin as they play.

Looking for even more ideas for fun things to do indoors? 

Don't miss these other sensory activities:

Looking for more indoor wintertime Fun:

Emily Papa is the publisher of Macaroni KID South Hills, Pa.

#IndoorFun #STEAM #STEAMfun #SensoryFun #KidFriendly #KidCrafts #FamilyFun #FamilyFriendly #ThingsToDo

Tagged under:
STEAM Sensory-Friendly