Our special little preschool friend is having a frog themed birthday party and we wanted to make her a frog birthday bin for learning and sensory play!  


  • Large bin
  • Ziplock bags and/or smaller bins for storing materials


  • We bought this Wild Republic Tube on Amazon for the present, but you can purchase similar ones from Michaels by Safari Ltd.  We also have Schleich brand frogs as well.

Printable Cards

  • Lily pad & flowers: lily pad card
  • Cardstock
  • Paint sticks (we used Kwik Stixs) and paint pens (we used Posca brand)
  • Scissors
  • Brass fasteners
  • Hole punch

Counting Frogs

  • Wooden plaque (We bought a circular one on Amazon, but have since seen similar ones at dollar stores)
  • Green paint
  • Sponge
  • Drill (to be used by an adult)
  • Garden markers (You can buy these at Michaels crafts store or dollar stores)
  • Paint pen (we like the Posca brand which you can find on Amazon)

Play Dough Pond

  • See our favourite recipe in the directions (use blue and green food colouring) or purchase blue and green Play Doh
  • Circular play dough cutter
  • Wooden flowers (you can purchase these at Micheals craft store or dollar stores)


  • Cornstarch
  • Blue food colouring
  • Glass gems

Water Play 

  • Blue food colouring
  • Lily pads (You can purchase these on Amazon or at dollar stores)

We always find these items useful too:



  • Purchase the required items.

Printable Cards

  • Print 6 copies of the template (or more if you have other ideas to add to bin).  We used them as a label for each activity (with the directions/ prompt/invitation inside), for a label for the bin and for a card as well.
  • Colour or paint your lily pads and flowers.  Allow them to dry and then cut them out.
  • Punch a hole in the middle of each flower and one on the top layer of of the lily pad.  Attach it all together with a brass fastener.  The flower layers with the smaller petal on top, the middle on the middle and so on.
  • Write your titles on the outside of the cards and your prompts in the inside for the birthday child.

Counting Frogs

  • Have an adult drill a hole in your plaque based on the garden signs that you have.  (You want them to fit snug in the hole.)
  • Paint your plaque to make it look like a lily pad.
  • Write the numbers 1-10 on your garden signs with paint pen.  We put the birthday child’s special number in a different colour.
  • Put your garden signs into a container to keep them organized.
  • Put all the supplies into a zippered bag or smaller container.

Play Dough Pond

  • Here is our favourite recipe.  The cooking portion should be done by an adult. Make one blue batch and one green.  You could also just purchase pre-made Play Doh!


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 salt
  • 3 tbsp cream of tarter
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Food colouring (or mainly yellow with a bit of red)


  • Combine all of the dry ingredients in a medium pot.
  • Add water and oil.
  • Cook on medium heat, adding the food colouring.
  • Stir continuously.
  • When the dough mix pulls away from the sides and forms into a large ball, the dough is ready to be placed in a small bowl to cool.
  • Store in a plastic container or re-sealable bag.

Source: Japer Place Child and Family Resource Centre

  • Add a circular cookie cutter, a small plastic play dough knife and wooden play flowers.


  • Add a box of cornstarch, blue food colouring and some gems (pop them in a container) or other items.
  • Usually the recipe for goop is 2 parts of cornstarch to 1 part water, however, we find that you should add only half the water and then add the additional water by tablespoons to get the right consistency. (Different brands are slightly different in terms of moisture needed.).  Add the food colouring to the water.
  • The goop could be made in the bin itself.

Water Play 

  • Add the lily pads and food colouring to the container with the label on the outside.  Again, the container could be used for the water play.

Putting it Together

  • Put all your activity bags into a large bin, attach your card to the top with a tape donut and if you like tie it up with a bit of ribbon!


  • Exploring different types of sensory play, developing one’s fine motor skills and one-to-one correspondence in counting.

Safety Notes

  • We suggest that you use a tray and a smock to protect your clothing and surfaces.
  • Use scissors with care and direct, adult supervision.
  • The cooking of the play dough should be done by adult.
  • Cord, yarn, ribbon  etc. can be a strangulation hazard, therefore be sure to use with direct supervision and for its intended purpose.
  • Small items such as gems can be a choking hazard, therefore be sure to keep them out of the reach of children ages 0-3 years of age or those that tend to put things into their mouths.
  • Direct supervision is needed for the playing of these activities (particularly those that include water).
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