Name Recognition Sensory Bin

I’ve read so many books, blog posts, and magazine articles about preparing my child for kindergarten.

It’s a huge deal. And since I’m the one in charge of preschool, it’s all up to me to prepare my girls. That’s a big responsibility.

So I read every thing I could find.

There were so many things to learn, but one thing really stood out to me. It was something so simple, so simple that I took it for granted. The one thing that stood out to me was the importance of name recognition for preschoolers.

Of course!

Help your child learn to recognize and spell their name with this Name Recognition Sensory Bin. It's a fun preschool activity to help them get ready for kindergarten.
My preschooler needs to learn to recognize her name. It’s going to be everywhere.
Where will she hang her coat? Underneath her name. I don’t want her to have to wait around for help. I want her to confidently recognize her name and know which coat hook to use.
So, I created a simple Name Recognition Sensory Bin. It is a great hands-on way for her to get familiar with the letters in her name and help her learn to spell it. She’s learning and she’s having fun. You can’t beat that.
Disclosure: This post contains Amazon Affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure Page for more details.
I started with a shoebox-sized plastic bin with a lid. That way when we’re not playing with it, we can close it up securely.
I then filled it with a variety of dried beans. I had several already-opened bags of beans in my cupboard, so I filled it with black beans, red beans, lentils, and split peas. I liked the variety of colors and plan on using this for several other sensory bins I have planned.

Next, I added the letters.

I used our magnetic letters and added only the ones that made up my preschooler’s name.

I typed up my daughter’s name in a variety of fun fonts and colors, laminated them, and cut them out individually.

I also wrote the individual letters on milk caps. You could also use small wooden disks, wooden letters, alphabet blocks, foam letters, or anything else you can find to write letters on.

To complete the bin, I added a few bowls and spoons for scooping.

To control the mess factor, we lay out an old pillowcase and put the bin on top of it. There is only one rule: everything stays on the pillowcase.

It really was simple to put together. I don’t know why I ever hesitated in making sensory bins!


My daughter spent a long time playing with her bin. She ran her fingers through it, hid all the letters under the beans, and spent a very long time scooping and pouring. We also worked together to spell her name with all the different letters in the bin.

Some playful learning ideas:
Sort the letters into piles of like letters
Try to spell your name using different types of letters.
Close your eyes and pull out a letter. What letter did you pull?
I’m a lot lesson worried about my daughter finding the correct coat hook. She’ll be able to hang up her coat with confidence. And that’s important.

For more fun ideas for your preschooler, please see:

Ready for Kindergarten Book Study: Name Recognition

Go Outside: Shape Hopscotch

Rhythm and Number Rhymes

Easy Homemade Name Puzzle at Teaching 2 and 3 Year Olds


The following two tabs change content below.
Terri is a writer and mom of two elementary-aged girls. She has a passion for learning and is always looking for ways to make learning fun. You can find her at Better Than Homework where she shares fun learning activities or Creative Family Fun where she shares art, craft, and family fun ideas.

Latest posts by Terri Thompson (see all)