Festive November Sensory Activities for Your Toddler


We’ve had such a great time playing with various sensory bins and activities since the school year started! I love being able to integrate upcoming holidays into our play this way – and it really helps keep my 1 year old occupied while his brother is in virtual school.

You can take a look at my previous posts for toddlers here:

I will list the supplies for the sensory activities next, but you may want to take a look at all of these ideas and then jump back up to supplies once you decide what you want to do.

Do you have other Thanksgiving or Fall-inspired sensory activities that you are doing? I’d love for you to share pictures + ideas with us on social media!

You can jump down to the four boxes and come back and review supplies later.

Supplies for all 4 boxes

Large sensory bin containers

If you already have a plastic bin or sensory table at home, you can make any size work for these bins. I like to use a bin that has a lid so that I can make them in advance and store them. These two bins are good options:

  • Sweater Box (15-5/8″ x 13-1/8″ x 6-3/4″ h)
  • Modular Storage Box (16. 25″ x 13″ x 6. 125″) – this is for a 4-pack, so you can prep an entire month in advance!

Fall Leaf Sensory Bin

Leaf Sensory Bag

Thanksgiving Dinner Sensory Bin

  • Thanksgiving painted rocks – see the post below
  • Popcorn kernels – add to your grocery list
  • Cranberries – add to your grocery list
  • Candy corn – add to your grocery list (or steal from the Halloween candy!)
  • Fine motor tools
  • Paper
  • Pen

Cranberry Scoop + Transfer

  • Cranberries – add to your grocery list
  • Water
  • Kitchen tools

Pumpkin Oobleck

  • Cornstarch – add to your grocery list
  • Water
  • Pumpkin – about 3lbs – pick one up at the grocery store
  • Trays, spoons, bowl, plate to play with

This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Affiliate + Michael’s Affiliate I earn from qualifying purchases. (This does not change the price that you pay at all!) Regardless, all product recommendations are my own opinions.


Ideal Age Range:

Ideal age is 1 – 3. Know your child and adapt as needed, some things are harder for really little kids and some things will lose the interest of older kids. (Always reach out in the comments if you need suggestions on how to adapt activities!) And as always, supervise your kids closely as they do these activities.

Mess Factor:

Low to Medium. This month’s activities are not too mess-heavy. There is always the high probability that small sensory items will get everywhere, but they shouldn’t leave a lasting mess. The oobleck is the messiest project and it does clean up surprisingly well – it basically dries into regular cornstarch that you can wipe up.

Prep Time:

Varies per activity. Ranges from 2 – 20 minutes.


How to Prep:

So many of these activities can be done with whatever fun Thanksgiving or Fall items you already have (or toys you might have). You don’t need to copy pictures below exactly – simply find items that are on sale, that are in your grocery store, or that are lying around and incorporate those.

Below you can see the posts that inspired all of the activities that I am going to be making. We’ll come back and update you on our play with more pictures!

Let us know what questions or comments you have below!

Fall Leaf Sensory Bin

This is a great activity from Powerful Mothering that can be used any time during the Fall season. As someone who grew up on the East Coast and now lives in Southern California, I miss leaves! So I love the idea of putting this box together for my son.

Bonus: this doesn’t make a mess. All of these faux items get scooped back up and put into the bin when he is done. (My son throws everything around all. the. time.)

easy toddler fall sensory bin idea
powerfulmothering.com

Leaf Sensory Bag

This sensory bag from Kids Craft Room looks like so much fun! I’m also very partial to sensory activities that are engaging but make NO mess!!

LEAF SENSORY BAGS - a fantastic mess free Autumn sensory play activity for kids. Children will love to explore this sparkly oil, water and leaf Fall activity that engages the senses.
kidscraftroom.com

Thanksgiving Dinner Sensory Bin

Now that Halloween is over, I’m already thinking about what I am going to cook for Thanksgiving! So I love this little Thanksgiving Dinner bin from Views From a Step Stool!

In this post you will also find directions on how to make these adorable little rocks (or how to buy them!)

I also really love that she has adaptions for toddlers, pre-schoolers and older children. This way you might even be able to make one bin that has a longer shelf life. Maybe save this one to keep the kids occupied while you cook!

A Thanksgiving dinner sensory bin that includes popcorn kernels and cranberries with some Thanksgiving dinner painted rocks. Adaptations for various ages.#thanksgivingsensorybin #thanksgivingkidsactivities #preschool #teachers #parenting #kidsholidays #sensoryprocessing
viewsfromastepstool.com

Cranberry Scoop + Transfer

My son is obsessed with transferring. OBSESSED! So anything that involves water, scooping and dumping is a huge hit.

Cranberries always make me a little nostalgic for my 4th grade class trip to the cranberry bog. (Yes, there are cranberry bogs in NJ!) My kids don’t really eat a lot of cranberry items, so I like that this is way to introduce and talk about them without the food.

This is also from Views From a Step Stool:

cranberry sensory bin pin 1
viewsfromastepstool.com

Pumpkin Oobleck

To be honest, this was not on my original list for November. But my kids (and husband) had SO much fun playing with our Halloween oobleck (see it here) that I had to put another one back in!

The great thing about oobleck is that you can use it with toddlers for sensory play, but it is also a wonderful science lesson + experiment for older kids. It’s a win win!

Check out the directions from Little Bins for Little Hands:

Pumpkin oobleck cornstarch recipe with ral pumpkin to explore physics, states of matter, and non-newtonian fluids
littlebinsforlittlehands.com

You can jump back to supplies to review what you need.

We’re excited to keep up our sensory play this November and experiment with new things. Let us know what you are playing with!


I would love to hear about the sensory activities you are putting together for your toddlers for this Thanksgiving season. Leave us a comment below!

If you would like to pin this activity, please use the image below.

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