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.

– Life Over C's Get ready for the 4th of July with this beautiful red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin! You could even include this as a fun activity for the toddlers and preschoolers during the festivities on the 4th!

Recommended Grade Level:

Materials for the Red, White and Blue Sensory Bin

  • Red Dyed Rice
  • Blue Dyed Rice
  • Rice
  • Cupcake Liners
  • Blocks
  • Measuring Cups
  • Painting Rollers
– Life Over C's Get ready for the 4th of July with this beautiful red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin!  You could even include this as a fun activity for the toddlers and preschoolers during the festivities on the 4th!

How to prepare the rice:

You’ll need 18 cups of rice total.

Put 6 cups of rice into each of the (2) gallon-sized zip top bags.

Place blue gel food coloring in one bag and red gel 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.

– Life Over C's Get ready for the 4th of July with this beautiful red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin!  You could even include this as a fun activity for the toddlers and preschoolers during the festivities on the 4th!

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.

– Life Over C's Get ready for the 4th of July with this beautiful red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin!  You could even include this as a fun activity for the toddlers and preschoolers during the festivities on the 4th!

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!

– Life Over C's Get ready for the 4th of July with this beautiful red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin!  You could even include this as a fun activity for the toddlers and preschoolers during the festivities on the 4th!

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.

– Life Over C's Get ready for the 4th of July with this beautiful red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin!  You could even include this as a fun activity for the toddlers and preschoolers during the festivities on the 4th!

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Pin it for later!

– Life Over C's Get ready for the 4th of July with this beautiful red, white and blue patriotic sensory bin! You could even include this as a fun activity for the toddlers and preschoolers during the festivities on the 4th!

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author avatar
Kim Staten Owner and Curriculum Designer
Kim Staten is a mother of four children ages 20, 19, 16, and 12. Kim has taught at the preschool, kindergarten and early elementary levels for 16 years. With extensive experience working with special needs children, including her own children with special needs (Rett Syndrome, autism, anxiety, and ADHD), she creates hands-on curricula and activities that are great for working with children of all abilities in the classroom and at home. Hands-on, accessible activities are her passion. 

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