Posts Tagged ‘sensory table’

Homemade Lego Table

Monday, March 5th, 2012

For Christmas we made the kids a sensory table which quickly became one of their most favorite activities. We have played with beans, rice, water, sand, seashells, rocks, and packing peanuts in it. It has been a car wash and an ice cream shop. We have used magnetic fishing poles to catch magnetic fish. We have washed and painted seashells collected from the beach. There are so many more ideas that we have yet to explore! We store and use our sensory table outdoors which works beautifully because it can get rather messy!

In addition to a sensory table I wanted an outdoor art table that could be used in conjunction with the sensory table as well as for separate messy art projects. I found THE perfect child-sized wood table at the thrift store for only $7.00! It was in great shape and super sturdy although was coated in paint, glue and glitter from the previous owners. No biggie! I just washed it down and painted it dark brown to match our sensory table. I love seeing them sit side by side.

The final project I had in mind was to make was a Lego table. Legos are hands down my kids’ top choice activity these days. They spend a great deal of time building Lego creations and playing with their Lego guys. Sometimes I think we could do away with all the other toys in our house except for our Legos and the kids would be perfectly content. Therefore I have been thinking a lot about how to build a Lego table for them. In fact most of my “pins” on Pinterest are ideas for a Lego table. My criteria were twofold; 1) a table that didn’t take up too much space and 2) was flexible in its design allowing for a variety of Lego play. Here’s what I came up with…

I purchased a bin to store the Legos in that is the same size as the bin in the sensory table. It is actually a really good size and depth for storing our Lego collection. We alternate between the Lego bin in the sensory table and the other bin (holding whatever sensory material we happen to be using at the time). When the Lego bin is not in the sensory table, it fits perfectly on the bottom  shelf of our coffee table. This way the kids can easily play with their Legos indoors or outdoors.

Next step was to provide a Lego base for the kids to build on. I purchased a set of 3 Lego Plates and glued them to a piece of wood I found at the “as-is” section of Ikea for $3.00. It was already finished and happen to be the perfect color so I didn’t need to do anything to it. Double score!! This Lego base fits right onto the art table that sits next to the sensory table. This allows us to have a Lego building station or a sensory/art station. I seriously love how it turned out! And it was super easy and inexpensive. In fact the most expensive part was purchasing the Lego plates. Although they were well worth the money because they add a whole new dimension to their Lego creations.

I have pinned so many Lego tables on Pinterest…I wonder if someone will now pin mine? Yep, this is the kind of stuff that excites me now…Lego tables! Can you tell I am the mom of 3 boys?!? 😉


PS. They now make Legos that are marketed towards girls called Lego Friends. Do any of you have these for your girls? If so what do you think of them?

How to Make a Sensory Table for $35

Monday, December 19th, 2011

I have been wanting a sensory table for my kids for a while now, however the hefty price tag has kept me from purchasing one. They average about $250+ depending on the style. Additionally it’s rare to find free shipping on this kind of item so add another $30ish dollars to cover the drop ship costs and I was looking at spending over $300 total including taxes and shipping. I would often visit various websites that sell sensory tables and a few times even placed one in my cart. Although I just couldn’t bring myself to hit enter and actually purchase one. On multiple occasions my hubby had said he could easily make one for a fraction of the cost. I finally decided to take him up on this offer and have him make one for a Christmas present for the kids.

Once we decided to make our own I was on a mission to find a table from a thrift store that we could convert into a sensory table. It had to be the right design/size, not too heavy, and at the right price. After a few weeks of searching I found this table and this bin at a thrift store. They were both the perfect size and shape and price! I spent $12 and walked out of there one happy customer! Next stop? Home Depot!

This was a coffee table which sits too low to function as a sensory table. So we first needed to figure out the best way to raise it up. After discussing a few options we decided to purchase two large dowel rods that could be cut to size and replace the existing legs. This seemed the best option because it would require the least amount of labor, be cost effective, be aesthetically pleasing, and result in a durable table, yet light enough that I could easily move it as needed.  At home depot we spend a total of $23. The dowel rods were $7 each (x2 = $14), the clearance can of paint was $6, and the hardware (bolts) totaled $3. Now we were ready for the easy part…making the table! It was a simple enough project to complete in a weekend. It involved basic skills/knowledge of power tools, woodworking, and measurement.

Making the table consisted of 5 basic steps:
1. Cutting off existing legs
2. Cutting dowel rods down to appropriate size
3. Cutting a hole in the table top for the bin to rest
4. Bolting in new legs
5. Painting table

Hubby cutting off existing legs with a jigsaw

Bolting in new legs

Finished table ready for sensory exploration!

Voila! A sensory table for $35 made with recycled materials from a thrift store! And I figure with the money saved from making one rather than purchasing one I can get some fun accessories to use with the sensory table! I am really excited for all the fun, messy, sensory play ahead of us!!

What simple DYI projects have you made for your children? Any special homemade Christmas gifts you would like to share ideas for? I would enjoy hearing from you!


PS. Tomorrow’s Tasty Tuesday is a recipe for one of my favorite vegan soups!

Silent Saturday: Weekend Project

Saturday, December 17th, 2011

Purchased these two items from a thrift store for $12 to make a sensory table for the kids for Christmas! More pics coming soon!