Sensory Bean Bin Add-In: Scrabble Letters

I love using the bean bin in My Obstacle Courses because I can work on my son’s sensory issues while combining it with things that he finds interesting.  He loves letters and words so for us it makes complete sense to combine the two!

Most everyone has a Scrabble game in their house, a game that is new to me, Bananagram (which has Scrabble-like letters), or those colorful magnet letters for the refrigerator.  I realized that using items like these would be a fun, literacy based add-in to the sensory bin and could be used in many different ways.  Here are a few:

Letter Identification

1.  If your child is working on letter identification, place some letters in there and when they are found, identify them together.  One extension of this could be sorting the letters by vowel and consonant.

Adding Scrabble letters to the bin. They can be chosen randomly or if you know of certain letters that are stumping your child, use those!

Put the letters into the bin.

Push the letters down into the beans so they are well hidden.

Letters are hidden. Time for your child to dig in!!

Making Words- Child’s Name or Picture Card Word

2.  Put only the letters in the bin that are needed to make a certain word (ex. their name or a word on a picture flash card).  Have your child find the letters and “make the same” word as on the card.

Use letters from their name!

Put the letters in and mix them to hide.

Your child digs in to find letters of their name.

Andrew found all of the letters to make his name!


Choose a card and put the letters to make that word into the bin.

Hide the letters in the beans.

Have your child dig in the beans to find the letters.

All of the letters found and put in order to make the word!

Mystery Word

3.  Put only the letters in the bin that are needed to make a certain word based on your theme or something they are studying in school.  Write out a clue for your child to see if they can identify the word and spell it using the letters found.  You could provide a Hangman-type sheet of paper with the exact number of letters so they have a place to work with and play around with the letters until the word is figured out.  Additional clues can be given if it turns out to be too challenging- remember, this is supposed to be fun time with you!!

Write out a clue for the word you want to them to spell and then gather all of the letters needed to spell it. Now hide the letters before your child sees the answer!!

Letters to make up the mystery word are in the bin ready to be mixed into the beans and hidden.

Letters are hidden, ready to be discovered. Read the clue and your child can dig in!

Use an answer card if your child needs assistance spelling the mystery word.

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