Bear Hunt Sensory Activity for Toddlers and Preschoolers


One of our favorite read-alouds is the the storybook, We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen. My toddlers and preschoolers could listen to that story on repeat!  In an effort to save my voice, I created this sensory activity.  Like mine, your toddler and preschooler will love re-creating the story with these sensory storytelling ideas and bonus, they are mess free!

Bear Hunt Sensory Bags

I know, I know.... mess free and sensory bags are an oxymoron.  Those two words typically aren't found together.  However, these sensory bags create a unique experience for those who have an aversion to mess and/or just don't have time to deal with one.  

With these sensory bags, your toddler and/or preschooler will swish-swash through the long wavy grass, stomp through the thick mud, swirling snowstorm and more without getting messy!  Explore these fun no-mess sensory bags that go along with the story.

Whether mess free or full blown mess, sensory play is so important for little hands!  Sensory play is a great way to explore the five senses: touch , taste, smell, see, and hear.  

Ready to enjoy this story in a whole new way?  Try these sensory story-telling ideas!

Bear Hunt Sensory Bags for Toddlers and Preschoolers

This Going on a Bear Hunt toddler activity was inspired by Little Sis' frequent request to read "Going on a Bear Hunt" at bedtime.  Since it's been pretty chilly outside, I put together these non-messy sensory bags to bring the story to life.  Sensory play doesn't always have to be messy!

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  • ziplock baggies
  • tape (I would highly recommend duct tape!)
  • different materials to go along with the book  

Sensory Bags

To create the sensory bags to go along with Were Going on a Bear Hunt, I put something in each bag that would resemble an element from the book. 

For the long wavy grass, I picked some of the ornamental grass from our garden.  

For the deep, cold river we colored some water blue with food coloring

For mud, we dug up dirt from the garden and added water to it.  

For the snowstorm, we added some powdered sugar.  

And for the forest, we picked up some broken twigs from the yard (and when I say "we," I mean I sent my son to gather them- Ha!)

**Helpful tip!  Word of caution, just make sure you double bag the mud and water !  Don't ask how I know ; )  

Going on a Bear Hunt Sensory Bags

Once you have assembled the sensory bags, it's time to explore!  This is a great time to get your toddler and/or preschooler involved in re-telling the story.

Sensory Storytime Ideas

One way we explored the story using these sensory bags is setting them out on the table with some toy people and re-enacting the book with props.  I printed off an image of a bear from online and stuck him in a paper bag cave.  Your child will still enjoy touching the bags and feeling the different materials.

Another idea is to tape them to a window or wall, so that your toddler or preschooler can squish the bags as they hang vertically.  Splish-splashing through the water while the sensory bag is taped to a window is especially cool! 

Alternatively, if you are up for the mess, skip the ziplock bags and just lay all these materials in a large plastic bin instead!

Going on a Bear Hunt is a book selection for Before Five In a Row; you might also like these other activities to go along with books from Before Five in a Row.