It seems like fall came out of nowhere this year but I’m not all that sad. I love fall for the cozy sweaters, the lack of sweat when I move and watching the leaves change colours. Also, pumpkins and apples. 

We haven’t done many activities lately for a variety of reasons so both the kids and I were excited for this one! So simple, easy and cheap but it was tons of fun. 

Here’s an easy fall sensory bin! 


  • Rolled oats
  • Pinecones
  • Fake pumpkins
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Different bowls, spoons and scoops (ours are all thrifted).
  • Ikea Flisat Table 
  • Ikea Trofast bins

I didn’t do much guiding in this sensory activity and just let them do as they pleased. They’re all fairly familiar with playing in their bins and went right into testing out the texture, scooping and dumping the oats and making drawings with the cinnamon sticks. 

I did occasionally prompt them to explore their five senses, such as:

  • Aren’t the oats so soft?
  • Do you like how the cinnamon sticks smell? 
  • What does a pinecone smell like? 
  • what shape does the pumpkin make in the oats?

The pumpkins we used for this one were from a package I grabbed at the Dollarama once upon a time. They were made out of styrofoam which was both a hit and a miss. The styrofoam made them light and fun for any age, and would make this activity great for young ones as they’re easy to handle. The lightness also meant they weren’t thunking onto the ground and annoying our attached neighbours. The downside is they are fragile – easy to poke holes into, easy to bite into and definitely still need supervision. 

When it became a game of throwing the oats all over the floor and making oat angels? That’s when I knew this bin had lost it’s initial interest and it was time to pack it up. Rather than remind them continuously about not throwing the oats, which would then turn it into a more fun oat throwing game because defiant toddlers, I had them help me sweep the floor oats and other pieces back into the bins, put the lids on and tucked the table away. Our Flisat table lives outside of the playroom gates so I can store sensory play inside of it! 

A few days later while the younger ones were napping, our four year old decided she wanted to play with it again and she brought the bins onto the playroom floor. She imagined she was working in a bakery and made oat cakes and cupcakes! 

I do have a love/hate relationship with food based sensory activities for a number of reasons – one huge one being how many live with food insecurities. I make sure that for every food based sensory activity we do I also make an effort in combating how many live in food insecurity. That can look like giving food away on local community groups, donating food to a local food bank or sending a monetary donation to a charity! I encourage you to do the same if you can.









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