Practicing writing with a salt tray can really impact how your child learns. It is a hidden gem that both teachers and occupational therapists both love to use.
When it comes to learning, the more senses that are involved in the process, the better. Facts will be remembered more easily, new skills will be acquired more readily. And this doesn’t just go for kids!
Emma from P is for Preschooler is sharing her own version of an Autumn Sensory Tray — mixing up her child’s sensory learning to match the season.
Autumn Salt Tray
I’ve been trying to keep this in mind while coming up with ways to work on spelling words with my 6 year old. She brings home a list from school and the teacher recommends she spell them out loud every day – efficient, yes, but not the most fun thing for an active first grader.
So I put together this simple salt tray. It was easy to set up and a big hit – after working on spelling words, she wanted to keep playing with it. I call that a win!
Materials you need:
- Salt (we used Epsom salt because it looks like crystals but table salt works just as well)
- Grated chalk
- Autumn-themed items
I started off by coloring the salt with grated chalk (orange with just a bit of yellow). It’s the quickest way to color salt and because of that it’s my favorite way. Then I went on a search for fall-type things to add. The best thing about these types of set-ups is that whatever you have on hand works great.
I would have liked to add a pine cone or some acorns, but it worked just as well with some crab apples (finally – they’re good for something!), twigs and colorful leaves. (The twigs are also a great addition if your child doesn’t like the feel of the salt.)
This turned out to be a great one for practicing words and would work great for letters, too. Next up…a sand tray!
About Emma: Emma is proudly “that” mom that lets her kids play with their food, who doesn’t mind (too much) when things take longer because the little ones were “helping,” and who always tries to make time to stop on a walk to explore something interesting (puddles, anyone?). You can read more of her adventures on P is for Preschooler.