I love the 4th of July! Absolutely love it! For so many years we’ve had to create our own July fourth festivities while living overseas and I’m totally looking forward to being able to celebrate here in the U.S.! Bring on those fireworks! (From a distance, of course, because Shiloh is terrified of them…) This red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin was so much fun! Shiloh isn’t ready to learn the Pledge of Allegiance, but she has learned the word flag, so we made sure to include them in our bin.
Materials suggested for this Red, White and Blue Patriotic Sensory Bin:
- 18 cups of rice
- Red and blue gel food coloring
- Hand sanitizer
- Cookie sheets
- (2) Gallon-size zip top bags
- Patriotic cupcake liners
- Toothpick flags
- Measuring spoons
- Various toys in red, white and blue (we used play dough tools)
How to prepare the rice:
Put 6 cups of rice into each of the (2) gallon-sized zip top bags.
Place blue food coloring in one bag and red food coloring in the other bag. You don’t need much, just the tip of a knife.
Squirt 10 pumps of hand-sanitizer into each bag. (If yours doesn’t have a pump, I estimate about 2-3 Tablespoons)
Close the bags and gently work the food coloring through the rice until all of the rice is coated.
Empty the rice onto the cookie sheets and put in a safe place (away from little kids’ fingers) to dry.
How to prepare the sensory bin:
#1 Hide it from your children
Okay, so if you have very patient kids, this might not be necessary, but I find it an absolute must to wait until my children are far away before assembling a sensory bin.
Mostly, because they enjoy the bins so much that they will try to play with them before I have my pretty pictures taken…lol!
So, I guess, truthfully, you can prep it with the kids around…
Anyway, I laid the rice in the tote in stripes. I realize that’s not what the flag looks like, but I was not going to take the time to figure it all out!
I always flip my cupcake liners inside out for sensory bins so that the kids can see the pretty designs while they are playing. Otherwise, they can only see the plain white inside.
Add in your measuring spoons and toys and you are ready to play!
After a little while, your kids will see how beautiful the rice is, as it becomes mixed up and they will decide to just go ahead and swirl it all together!
Don’t worry though! Even after it’s all mixed together, you can use this tutorial to re-dye the rice for a new sensory bin.
Our Favorite Fourth of July Books For Kids:
We can’t live without these!
Once your child’s creativity is sparked with this fun activity, take it a step further with these engaging resources:
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Our Flag (Little Golden Book)I Spy book for Kids Ages 2-5: I Spy 4th Of July: A Fun Guessing Game for 2-5 Year OldsIt’s Not About You, Mrs. Firecracker: A Love Letter About the True Meaning of the Fourth of July (The Love Letters Book Series)The Night Before the Fourth of JulyApple Pie Fourth Of JulyThe Berenstain Bears God Bless Our Country (Berenstain Bears/Living Lights: A Faith Story)