While we love our Sand Play Dough and Sand Trays for writing practice, summer is the perfect time for big-scale sand play. These sandbox play ideas will keep your kids happy and entertained all summer long!
Below I have collected a variety of ideas that can be done in an outdoor sandbox – or brought inside for a smaller sandbox. Sand is one of the most universal sensory play materials and it’s amazing how many ways you can play with it! We’ve included everything from imaginative play to science experiments, and more!
We’ve also dug up (ha!) some edible sand play ideas if sand is not appropriate for your child (due to age or special needs). One of my all-time favorite activities with Ella was learning how to make a sandcastle cake – so we’re firm fans of the “edible sand” idea!
Super Fun Sandbox Play Ideas for Kids
(Above image, clockwise from top:)
1. Sand and Water Ocean Sensory Bin | Mom-inspired Life
2. Flower Sensory Play | Life Over C’s
3. Sandbox Volcano Eruption | Little Bins for Little Hands
4. Calming Construction Sensory Activity | B-inspired Mama
5. Homemade Sand Slime | Little Bins for Little Hands
6. Preschool Sandbox Science | Little Bins for Little Hands
7. Indoor Sandbox Beach | Creekside Learning
(Above image, clockwise from top left:)
8. Engineering Sandbox Sensory Play Activity | Little Bins for Little Hands
9. Glitter Sand | Still Playing School
10. Edible Sand Sensory Pool | Busy Toddler
11. Fossil Dig | Munchkins and Moms
12. Mini Sandbox Storytelling | Inner Child Fun
11. Learning to Count Indoor Sandbox Activity | Creekside Learning
12. Sandpit Treasure Hunt | Here Comes the Girls
14. Sandbox Geography | Books and Giggles
16. Creating Sand Dunes | Pleasantest Thing
17. Sand Play with Loose Parts | The Imagination Tree
18. Sea Small World | Uno Zwei Tutu
19. Edible Sand Sensory Play for Babies | Happily Ever Mom
20. Sandbox Diamond Mine Sensory Play | The Craft Train
21. Sandbox Pendulum
23. Preschool Shape Sand Tray | Learning2Walk
24. Easy Sandbox Play Ideas | Happy Hooligans
25. Colored Sand Sensory Play | Learning4Kids
26. Sand Pies Sensory Play | Frogs and Snails and Puppydog Tails
27. DIY Moon Sand | Kidz Activities
28. DIY Kinetic Sand | Parenting Chaos
(Pictured below, left to right:)
29. Edible Indoor Sandbox | Hands on as We Grow
30. Fairy Neighbourhood Imaginative Play | Sugar Aunts
I have to mention my friend Dyan’s amazing ebook, 35 Ways to Play with Kinetic Sand. If your kids are fans of this awesome play material, this book will give them hours of ideas – which will probably morph into several new ideas and even more fun!
If your child is a big construction fan, don’t miss this Construction Sensory Bin. You can easily adapt it for sand play by switching out the beans with play sand.
Want to have more sandbox play ideas? Make your sandbox fun even more exciting for the kids with these awesome construction play toys and books: