23 Sensational Sand Play Ideas Your Kids will Love


April 13, 2021

Sand play ideas - Mykidstime

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Kids of all ages love sensory play, and what better sensory fun than playing with sand? It evokes all kinds of wonderful memories for us all, of lazy days spent playing on beaches!

Here are 23 Sensational Sand Play Ideas Your Kids (And You!) will Love.

Super Fun Sand Play Ideas

Sand is so versatile – you can sift it, dig in it, pour it, enjoy the feel of it, build with it, and even make art with it! This versatility means that it appeals to toddlers, preschoolers and even bigger kids who enjoy getting hands-on for some sensory fun.

#1. Sand Drawings Outside

sand play ideas for kids

Drawing with sand is so much fun! Like Buggy and Buddy, using clear squeeze bottles and a variety of coloured sand, use the great outdoors for your canvas!

#2. Sand Dough Sensory Play


Using three simple ingredients, Little Bins For Little Hands show us how you can create some sensory sand dough to explore at home! It feels soft to touch and doesn’t leave a heavy residue on the hands. It also sweeps up easily, which is a bonus.

#3. Creating Sand Castles that will Last


Sand castles are great fun to make. Want to create one that will last? Meaningful Mama gives us the low down on creating your very own sand castle sculpture.

#4. Indoor Beach

indoor beach

Do you want to give your child sensory activities to explore, but are held back as they still put things in their mouths? How about an edible indoor beach, courtesy of Mama Papa Bubba?

#5. Sand Art Bottles

sand art bottles

Aren’t these gorgeous? Recycle some old bottles or containers and create a fantastic keepsake. Art Bar used food colouring to dye sand in a variety of colours.

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#6. Sand Foam


Using only two ingredients, this is an interesting sensory activity by Little Bins For Little Hands, that is very simple to create. Whether you are creating a play set up for imaginative play or mark making, sand foam is sure to go down a treat!

#7. Train Tracks in the Sand

Sand tracks

Is your child crazy about trains? You could take inspiration from Play Trains by gathering sticks together and take a trip down to the beach. Create your very own train tracks in the sand, or even extend this idea to create your very own sand city!

#8. Preschool Dinosaur Dig


Calling all archaeologists! Uncover the dinosaur bones and see if you can identify the creatures, in this activity by Fireflies and Mud Pies.

#9. Sand Paint

Sand painting

We love painting activities and have done many different techniques over on our blog. I love the idea of adding textures, and sand would be a great choice and great fun for finger painting! Homegrown Friends have also been busy sand painting.

#10. Sandy Oobleck

sandy oobleck

Buggy and Buddy share the recipe to create a fun Sandy Oobleck to explore. They show us in their ooey-gooey dinosaur world.

#11. Microwave Puffy Paint

puffy sand paint

This Puffy Paint by Simple Fun For Kids is an interesting media to paint with. I love that children can help create this paint from scratch! You can offer a range of materials to transfer the paint onto the canvas. Whether you choose to use spoons, hands or squeezy plastic bottles you will create some fun puffy textured art work!

#12. Scented Sand Paint

Kool Aid Sand Paint

This is a super cool painting activity that not only stimulates sight and touch, it also stimulates smell! Using tin foil for their canvas, Learn Play Imagine created some colourful, sandy artwork. Mix roughly a cup of flour with a packet of Kool Aid (or a couple teaspoons of powder if you buy in bulk) with a little water. Add water slowly to get the desired consistency then add play sand and mix well.

#13. Sand Play and Social Skills

sand sensory challenge

Preschool Powol Packets show how a a very simple invitation to play ended up being a very successful play session. They created quick sand, a fabulous combination of science and sensory fun!

#14. Montessori Inspired Habitats

Sand sensory habitat

A set of three Montessori inspired habitats from Mamas Happy Hive. From the Arctic to the Forest to Africa, here are three amazing sand set ups you should really check out!

#15. Contact Paper and Sand Craft

Sand art

Have you used contact paper for crafts? It is particularly great for children who are aged 2 years and under. Since it’s already sticky, there’s no need to use glue! Red Ted Art gets creative and makes some beautiful ‘under the sea’ themed cards.

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#16. Kinetic Sand


Have you ever heard of Kinetic Sand? You can mould it and create structures. Squeeze it in your hands and it hardens, but as soon as you release it ‘melts’. It has the properties of wet sand, however it is not wet. Eating Richly shows you how to make your own homemade version.

#17. Sand Play Dough with Small Loose Parts

Sand play dough

Oh the absolute beauty of this activity! A no-cook playdough, from Mama Papa Bubba, that resembles a sandy beach and lots of accessories for creating patterns and mark making. From sea shells, to glass nuggets, to sea glass this activity is delightful and well worth taking a look at!

#18. Lizard Sand Play

lizard sand play

Dry bed creeks are found all across Australia. They are essential for directing water from rain during the wet season. Here is a small world dry creek play set up for Lizards, we did at Learning and Exploring Through Play.

#19. Rainbow Sand Slime

rainbow sand slime

Slime is an interesting, therapeutic, calming sensory media that in this activity has a twist. Adding rainbow coloured sand, like Learn Play Imagine, and a new texture was born! Simple Fun For Kids have also enjoyed some super stretchy sandy slime.

#20. Sensory Play Using a Sand Tray

sensory sand play

A different, interesting way to mark make from Buggy and Buddy. Not only can you use a sand tray like this for free play drawing, you can also use it to practice letter and number formation and spellings.

#21. Ocean Sensory Bin

ocean sensory bin

Using simple ingredients, Fun Learning for Kids designed this fantastic ocean sensory bin which gives lots of opportunity for creative play.

#22. Sandcastle Playdough Kits

sandcastle play dough

If you enjoy making gifts that little ones will love, then these sandcastle playdough kits by Mama Papa Bubba are adorable! A cute token for some hands on creativity.

#23. Erupting Sand Foam Dough

Erupting Sand Foam Dough (15)

In this erupting sand foam dough play activity, Learn Play Imagine shows us how to use inexpensive household ingredients to fill your morning with amazing sensory play.

23 Sensational Sand Play Ideas Your Kids will Love – Mykidstime

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