It’s hard to believe, but fall is here! That means cooler nights, beautiful trees and lots of pumpkin muffins in my future. And don’t forget hot cider, pumpkin picking and decorating. There’s so much I love about fall, but today I wanted to share 10 fall sensory play activities that your kids are sure to love.
Many of these activities I set up at my kids art classes last fall. I like to have a sensory bin component to our classes that the kids can migrate to once they’ve wrapped up the art activity.
Most of these sensory play ideas are also taste safe making them a great fit babies and toddlers too.
You might be wondering, “What are the advantages of sensory play?”. Here’s why sensory play is important for kids and worth encouraging.
So, let’s get started!
10 Fall Sensory Play Activities for Kids
1. Halloween Cloud Dough
Cloud dough is super simple to make.
For this Halloween version combine 8 parts flour to 1 part cooking oil. Then mix in cocoa powder to color it and make chocolate cloud dough. Finally, add in guords, silicone cupcake liners, scoopers and candy corn (if you have baby/toddler you might choose to omit the latter).
2. Pumpkin Pie Oobleck
This stuff is so fun to touch and is a very satisfying material for young kids to explore.
Mix 1 cup pumpkin puree with 1.5 cups cornstarch. Tweak to your liking depending how firm or squishy you’d like it. Add in plastic animals (or other seasonal toys)to make footprints!
3. Water Play with an Autumnal Spin
This setup is so quick making it especially great when you need time to make dinner or need a few quiet minutes.
For this I used a big plastic bin and filled it a few inches with water. Then I added pumpkins, oranges and some strainers and cups/bowls.
(Inspiration thanks to fantastischer_raum for this super simple, yet beautiful autumn sensory play idea.)
4. Halloween Aquafaba + Candy Corn
In case you haven’t heard, aquafaba is AMAZING! It is a delightfully fluffy and taste safe making it perfect for even the littlest ones to play with. I like to make different versions for the holidays and seasons!
Add fun embellishments for pretend bakery fun for older kids or hide some bigger plastic animals in the foam for babies to discover.
5. Foamy Water Play with Pumpkins
I was astounded by how quickly the foam got out of control! We had a whole Strega Nona pasta pot situation on our hands. So take note and go find the largest bowl in your house!
6. Apples & Oats Sensory Play Bin
This bin reminds me of cozy fall days and warm mulled cider. Pour some oats, throw in some apples, add a few cinnamon sticks (and star anise if you have it)… and ta-dah!
7. Autumn Playdough
For the fall scent and color I used a mixture of liquid watercolors and spices for the browns (coriander, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg). And did you know, pinecones make beautiful rose prints in playdough?
8. Orange Oobleck & Bumpy Guords
This is traditional oobleck which is wonderfully drippy, yet firm. Have you made this yet? If not you must try it! Add food coloring or liquid watercolors to color.
It’s a great sensory activity for babies to explore, especially with the addition of some bumpy guords. I mean, look at that face!
9. Floating Leaf Water Play
This one is so simple that I almost didn’t mention it. Go on a nature walk and collect some beautiful leaves. Fill a baking sheet with enough water to allow the leaves to float.
That’s it! Babies will happily splish splash to their hearts content.
10. Autumn Oats Sensory Play Bin
This oats bin is a spin off of the apple version above. I merely swapped out the apples and added guords and little pumpkins. The oats will keep for quite a while, when they’re not in use, I put them in a plastic shoebox bin in a cupboard.
More Fall Art & Play Activities for Kids
- Painting Pumpkins With Kids Is The Perfect Halloween Sensory Activity
- A Not-Too-Spooky Halloween Music for Kids Activity
- 31 Days of Halloween Activities for Kids
Autumn Arts & Crafts Ideas & Supplies
Download our FREE printable idea list of 30 autumn activities for kids & families! Or check out the blog post with the links. So many fun ideas for fall!
And be sure to check out our FALL family fun list in our Amazon store! It includes supplies for fall arts & crafts, autumn toys, Halloween ideas, and picture books about autumn.
PLUS: We’re offering 50% OFF and MORE on our Kids Art Spot Halloween workshops, Fall workshops and bundles. (Sale ends October 31, 2021 at 11:59 pm EST)
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