Sensory Activities

Parents have been asking for a list of sensory activities to do with their children.  We recommend that you always ask a professional for guidance when creating a sensory diet.  Here is a list of a few of my favorite at-home activities:

1.)    Touch (tactile sense)

  • Put slippery textures on a large piece of paper, tray, or a cookie sheet (eg., shaving cream, hand lotion, sloppy mud, wet sand).
  • Play with playdough, sand, uncooked rice or/and beans.
  • Google “goop, slime, and gak” recipes to make.
  • Hide little toys and coins in putty for a treasure hunt.
  • Make a car wash using a bin of soapy water, mini cars, and towels.
  • Do crafts. DLTK’s has easy and free printable preschool crafts.

2.)    Balance and Movement (vestibular sense)

  • Build an obstacle course with pillows and other “stepping stones.”
  • Use a jump rope or chalk to draw a makeshift balance beam.
  • Find a good children’s yoga video.
  • Rough and tumble play.
  • Animal walks: bear walk, crab crawl, fly, slither, crawl, gallop, prance, etc.
  • Other walks: wheel barrel walk, skip, walk fast, walk slow, run, tip toe, etc.
  • Play Red Light, Green Light.
  • Playground play.
  • Go swimming.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Songs: Ring Around the Rosy, Head Shoulders Knees and Toes, If You’re Happy and You Know It, Hokey Pokey, musical chairs, or blast some good music and have a dance party!

3.)    Body Position (proprioceptive sense)

  • Use large pillows/bean bag chairs to build a mountain. Climb to the top and jump crashing down.
  • Heavy work: help to carry grocery bags, help to put groceries away, help load wet clothes into the dryer, take out a bag of garbage, clean tables and windows, make the bed, and/or carry a heavy watering can to water flowers.
  • Wall pushups, wheel barrel walk, sit ups.
  • Use a bed or couch as a crash pad. Pick up your child, and safely throw him on it.
  • Body squeezes.
  • Use pillows to make a “child sandwich,” or a “kid taco.”
  • Ride a bike or scooter.

4.)    Seeing (visual sense)

  • Follow a daily schedule board.
  • Fishing games.
  • Egg hunt.
  • Play basketball, kick a soccer ball at a target, play with a ball (roll, throw, catch, bounce, dribble, bounce & catch), or ring toss games.
  • Build tracks and ramps for cars and marbles.
  • Read books and talk about them.
  • Play with blocks and legos.
  • Have a water fight with spray bottles, squirt guns, and hoses.
  • Use the hose to water the garden.
  • Use flashlights on a rainy day, at night, or inside a tent.

5.)    Hearing (auditory sense)

  • Play instruments.
  • Sing songs. Sing loud.  Sing softly.  Hum a song.
  • Imitation Songs: Sing three word and have the child imitate the words in the same manner.  Create a rhythm with instruments or clapping and have the child imitate the same rhythm.
  • Listen to calming music. Yoga and relaxation stations are great.

6.)    Smelling (olfactory sense)

  • Make scented index cards with spices from your spice rack. Describe the smells.
  • Cook together.

7.)    Tasting (gustatory sense)

  • Try new foods.
  • Go apple picking and strawberry picking. Pick vegetables out of a garden.


If you need more help, please check out my Sensory Diet post or contact us directly at Above All Therapy.


Sensory Activities

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