Sensory bins have gained a lot of popularity over the last few years and this butterfly habitat bin fits right in.  While I don’t personally consider them a necessity for growth and development they are a fun way to help your child explore their senses!

 Here’s a super simple but fun butterfly habitat sensory bin that is sure to bring some fun to your day. 

I love looking back at this sensory bin. While it may not be the simplest of sensory bins I’ve done, this butterfly habitat sensory bin was the very first one I did after opening our home daycare. 

I remember that I was so scared something would go wrong, or that I’d be finding beans around the playroom for weeks afterwards. Instead nothing went wrong, the kids loved it and they all requested I bring back the butterfly habitat bin again!


I added a lot more detail than I usually do to this bin, so you can definitely skip some of these and still have an amazing butterfly habitat sensory bin. 

Base materials: 

  • White beans
  • Lentils
  • Fake grass (mine are the square ones Dollarama releases with their summer line)
  • Fake flowers pulled off their stems (I thrifted mine for super cheap) 


I first put down the lentils and beans. I would only do one or the other if you don’t enjoy sorting beans out of lentils for an hour afterwards. Then I shook the fake grass into the beans/lentils, added the flowers and lastly the butterflies. 

If the bins look too full for you, you don’t own enough of the list or you want a simpler version: 

  • Pick a base (beans, sand, water beads, oobleck…)
  • Add a few pieces of nature (fake flowers or grass, branches)
  • Add fake butterflies

Go from there. Items like tongs would work in place of nets and the base can be whatever you prefer!

We did this during monarch butterfly season,

so they were already seeing so many butterflies coming and going outside but could never see them up-close. This butterfly habitat sensory bin was a fun way to address butterflies, talk about them and have a zero percent chance of a baby squishing one. 

Next year the goal is to actually raise a butterfly through it’s phases. For now, this butterfly habitat sensory bin will do!

(UPDATE: We did end up raising butterflies – you can read about it here..)

If you aren’t a butterfly person (or simply don’t have butterfly figures) you could turn this butterfly habitat into a bug hunt of any kind. Use the little spiders if it’s close to Halloween, or ladybugs in the fall when they’re all sneaking inside.

Maybe your little really enjoys worms and you want a non-edible way to explore! Either way, fake bugs are a great way to introduce them to your little or explore bugs you wouldn’t normally see where you live.

Happy bug catching!



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  1. Easy Sensory Bin Ideas for Kids

    February 19, 2022 at 3:24 pm


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