This skeleton sand tray puts a spooky and fun twist on a classic kids activity. Plus, print the skeleton bone number cards for number practice in the sand.
We love using sand trays as calming tools in our house. Like sensory bins, they can be easily switched out with minor details to celebrate holidays or seasons. This skeleton sand tray is getting a lot of use with my kids this Fall alongside our pumpkin patch sensory bin. Print out the number cards below to grab a set of boney numbers that your kids can look at to practice their number writing in the sand.
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Skeleton Sand Tray for Halloween Sensory Play
This skeleton sand tray is so simple to make! Add some play sand to a bin and some spooky skeleton hands and voila! I grabbed these plastic skeleton tongs from the Dollar Store, and they are perfect because they are long and sturdy, but easy for little hands to manipulate. Plus, the kids think they are SUPER cool. What a fun Halloween activity for kids.
But, if you don’t have these at your local Dollar Store, any skeleton type decor would work, or you can purchase them on Amazon here. My own kids really like sticking the arm up their sleeves and trying to manipulate the hand as if it was their own.
What you need to make the Skeleton Sand Tray
Black play sand
Number Cards (print them below)
How to use a sand tray?
We use a sand tray in two ways at my house, however, sand tray therapy is often used among child psychologists as a therapy technique. We use is as:
- fine motor practice for writing letters, numbers, and drawing shapes
- a calming tool where the kids can freely draw or play in the sand for decompression, when they are angry, or for fun!
One of my favorite sand tray hacks is to tape a mini clothespin to the back of the tray. This can hold number cards, sight words, shape pictures or drawing prompts for the kids to look at. And, using the clothespin is an added fine motor workout for them!
How does sand play help a child’s development?
Sand play in general helps develop find motor skills as children often will shape and mold the sand or use sand tools to manipulate the material.
They are also using their proprioceptive sense while feeling the weight of the sand on their body, and they body in relation to the space around them. Additionally the texture and weight of sand engages the senses, and provides calming sensations for many children.
When playing in a large sand tray or sand box with more than one child, social skills such as problem solving, sharing and communication are developed.
Get the skeleton number cards for the sand tray
These are just some quick number cards that I drew for my own kids as prompts to practice their number writing in the sand. I’m happy to share them with you! Click on the image below to download and print.
Have so much fun with this skeleton sand tray in your own home or classroom. How will you use it?