Toddler & Preschool Activity Boxes

I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I was planning on making the girls activity boxes as their “new baby” gift.  Well, these boxes took me awhile to put together, mainly because I got sidetracked by my nesting urges.

However, they were pretty simple to put together.  I used the majority of things I scored from the Dollar Tree a couple weeks ago and also stuff I had around the house.

This is the first one and I call it the Princess Box.  I’m not big on pinks and girly… most of our stuff is pretty gender neutral.  But this box kind of took on a life of it’s own.  This is what is in it…


  • Foam butterflies on a book ring. (I plan on getting those colored circle dots you use for garage sale pricing… mainly for Cami to use to stick on.  Because of the foam, the stickers become reusable.)
  • Shakey bottle – Similar to an iSpy bottle, found over here.
  • ABC photo album – Downloaded and printed these flashcards.
  • Linking shapes & spoon – Found these shapes at the Dollar Tree
  • Lacing Activity – With foam curlers and pipe cleaners.  (Found idea on internet but not sure where.)
  • Fairy sticker book – using Tinkerbell stickers & blank book I made
  • My Little Pony – with comb and brush

I also want to add some of the printable activities from the Princess Preschool Pack over at 1+1+1=1.


This is the Transportation Box and probably my favorite!  I had so much fun putting it together, probably because deep down I long for a little boy.  ;)   Brylee already has spied it on the counter, though, and begged me to play with it.  Inside you will find…


  • Airplane puzzle – From the Dollar Spot at Target awhile ago.
  • Felt road play mat – Just some hot glue, felt & creativity (I plan on making more for them to put together for a huge mat).
  • Transportation erasers – From Dollar Tree.  Going to add some magnets to the back, which can be used for play and patterns on a cookie sheet.
  • Bean bags – My friend gave these as favors at her son’s birthday party.
  • On the Move Matching game – Printable from this Transportation Preschool Pack (see below for more pictures on this).
  • Puzzle cards – Part of a 3 pack of flashcards from the Dollar Tree.
  • Cars & Color Matching – This is the lid of the box.  This idea stemmed from here.
  • Size sequencing buses - Part of the transportation preschool pack.
  • Reusable sticker scene – Comes with foam transportation stickers in the bag.  Used a thick plastic zip bag.  (Idea came from here.)

If you can believe it, I actually have more to add to this box.  Most of it from the Transportation Preschool Pack.


I downloaded and printed out the matching portion of the Transportation pack.  I then glued the pieces to a file folder I cut in half.  Covered the folder and pieces with some contact paper.   And viola!  A fun matching game.  I may add some velcro to the pieces.  Hmm…


These are the contents of our Miscellaneous Box.  There are many skills that can be taught and played with using these items.  Here’s what we have…

  • ABC foam magnet puzzle – Found at Dollar Tree.  Letters come out and are fully backed with magnets.
  • Lacing Letters – Found these at a local consignment store.
  • Big foam dice
  • ABC puzzle, matching cards – Part of the 3 pack from the Dollar Tree.
  • Colors book with real pictures – From the Dollar Spot at Target awhile ago.
  • ABC movement cards – These are awesome!  Printable here.
  • Texture book – homemade using hot glue & random things around the house.

I have a few more things I want to add to this box, mainly ABC printables from Confessions of a Homeschooler.


I put this together on the fly after making a rough schedule of the girls’ day for whoever watches them when I go into labor.  Part of the day includes spending some time outside in the backyard.  Usually I just let them free play, but I thought it would be fun to put together a basket of outside play activities.

  • Gloves and shovels for playing in the dirt.
  • Bug container.
  • Spray bottle filled with water.
  • Chalk
  • Bubbles.  (We get so many of these at Easter from family members!)

Need to add in some sunblock and bug spray.  It’s that hot and buggy time of year in Florida!

A big shout out to Playing House for sparking this idea of Activity Boxes!  I can’t wait to make more of these.  :)

Linking to Preschool Corner at Homeschool Creations

Best toys for toddlers


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14 Responses to Toddler & Preschool Activity Boxes

  1. Awesome activity boxes. I printed a copy of the alphabet movement cards that we used a lot during the winter when it was to cold to play outside. I love those.

    • Carolyn says:

      Thank you! I know, I am so excited to do those with my oldest one. She is going to have so much fun. And they will be easy to do while I nurse the new one. :)

  2. Love your activity boxes! Come by our blog and join us at our weekly linky for toddlers! :)

  3. Amy says:

    These are so cool. I have been wanting to put some together, but I am too busy. Would love to have one.

    • Carolyn says:

      A lot of the things we already had around our house. For some reason, putting them all together in a box makes them more appealing and exciting. lol. Of course, right?! Or you could stop in a dollar store or dollar spot at Target for some cheap stuff and just throw them in a box. Easy as pie! You don’t have to go overboard like me and add the printable stuff. And then taking the box down every so often keeps the toys fun and appealing, like a treat. :)

  4. Stephanie says:

    Hi Carolyn!! Thank you so much for linking to my post!! I love your activity boxes!! Such great ideas!! We love our boxes and still use them all the time!!

  5. You know I often work so hard to make hands on activites for my kids-only to put them out on the shelf for one week and then store them away indefinatly. Maybe I can make bins like these from the stuff I’ve already made. Great ideas!! Oh, and I love the use of old foam curlers for threading!

    • Carolyn says:

      I am the same way with printable activities and dollar stuff I pick up randomly. I found so much around our house, it was incredible! And I wish I could find the site where I found that curler idea. So great and easy! Thanks for stopping by! :)

  6. LOADS of great activities and ideas! Love it! And off to check your other posts ;)

    Featuring this post over at High paw! Thanks for joining us for a first time and see you this week too! :)

  7. Suellyn Champion says:

    Carolyn, I’ve been following your pins on Pinterest and that is where I saw these Sensory Bins. I’m a retired teacher and this is something of which I’m not familiar. I see information on creating the boxes but I wanted to know the reasoning behind them and at what ages to use them.

    • Carolyn says:

      The toddler & preschool activity boxes are different from the sensory bins I use with my kids. The activity boxes were created as presents to give to my girls when my third girl was born. The boxes came out during nursing or when we were just having a tough day. :) The age level of the boxes depends on what activities you put into your boxes. The activity boxes still come out today from time to time and are thoroughly enjoyed by my girls! To see how sensory bins are different and why we use them, you can check out this post here… Hope that helps! Thanks for stopping by!! :)

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