Sensory play engages your child’s senses – touch, hearing, sight, smell and taste, while helping to develop motor skills, encouraging experimentation and problem solving and can even help your child calm down if they’re feeling over stimulated.
Whether they’re scooping and squeezing sand in a sand table or connecting and contorting tubes together, sensory-friendly toys allow children to learn through play. Here are a few sensory-friendly gift ideas for children.
1. Chuckle and Roar Sensory Fidget Box. The Sensory Fidget Box includes 10 items that provide a range of sensory inputs. From a fidget controller, sensory blocks to a squishy hedgehog — calming, popping, stretchy, twisty and satisfying for everyone ages 3+. $14.99, target.com
2. Teeter Popper. In playful exploration, Teeter Popper improves core strength, stability, leg strength, balance, coordination and gross-motor skills. Ages 3+ $39.95, fatbraintoys.com
3. Hand2mind Sensory Fidget Tubes. These tubes are designed to help children manage their emotions, focus their attention and practice quiet, calm engagement with four colorful sensory fidget tubes. These securely sealed, easy-to-grip bottles offer movement patterns and provide a quiet option for kids who need help settling down. Ages 3+ $33.95, Sold at various retailers.
4. Learning Resources Helping Hands. Fine Motor Tool Set. Twist, scoop, squeeze and build little hand muscles. Help kids develop fine-motor skills and strengthen hand and finger muscles needed for writing. Includes Gator Grabber Tweezers, Handy Scoopers, Twisty Droppers, and Squeezy Tweezers. Ages 3+ $12.89, Sold at various retailers.
5. 2-In-1 Seek & Write Sensory Bin. The lid of the bin includes a zen sand garden where kids can work through sand-based writing and drawing activity cards. Inside the bin, kids can dive into a multisensory exploration experience. Over 92 things to find and tools including toy bugs, toy coins, toy gems, 62 letters & numbers, a scoop, tweezers, a bowl, a die, and more. Ages 3-6. $19.99, chuckleandroar.com
6. Mobi Games Zoomi Hexagon Maze. Start the challenge by placing the ball at “start,” then twist, turn and tumble through the five mazes and finish the maze at the “stop.” Improve cognitive skills, concentration and fine motor skills with many ways to play. Ages 4+ $26.99, playmobi.com
7. BUNMO 4pk Poppin Pipes. Pop, Crinkle, Pull, Stretch! Stimulate your child’s imagination and explore endless creative ways to play with Pop Tubes. Create shapes, letters, and make up games for hours of entertainment. The tubes stretch over 2 feet and can connect for even more fun. Ages 3+. $6.99, bunmo.com
8. Wacky Tracks. This unique chain of clicking hinges is fun to bend and form into all kinds of creative shapes, letters, and numbers — or to just fidget with. Encourages fine motor skills, creativity, calmness. Ages 5+ , $6.48, fatbraintoys.com
9. Texture Brushes. Add cool patterns and textures to art projects with handy brushes—just dab, swirl or swoosh! Each brush has a unique texture, so it’s a cinch to create everything from floral shapes to cube designs! Ages 3+ $16.99, lakeshorelearning.com
10. Harkla Hug. Inflate the sensory pea pod and watch your child explore a new comfort spot in your home. The Harkla Hug provides deep touch pressure in the form of firm tactile sensory input or proprioceptive input to the whole body, which has a calming, organizing effect on children and adults alike. Ages 2+ $99.99, harkla.com