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toys for sensory development ECE and home

Ocean Provocation for Sensory Development

Creating interesting provocations is the best way to encourage children to engage and explore during a lesson or play setup.

This open-ended ocean wonderland is a wonderful way for children to explore various textures, shapes and smells for sensory development. Sensory exploration is a child's way of examining, discovering, categorising, and making sense of the world around them and forms an integral part of their brain development. Suddenly, the rock is more than a rock, it's a hard, course rounded ball that smells like soil and Shells aren't just shells, it becomes a curvy smooth snail house that smells like the ocean.  toys for kids sensory development

The materials used in this provocation are chosen specifically to appeal to a child's senses. Not only does it look exciting and interesting, it offers wonderful opportunities for children to explore their senses and engage in a playful activity and story at the same time.

This Setup can be created with any resources you have available and is completely open for interpretation and imagination. 

 kids toys for home and ECE

Here's what we used to create this Setup:

  • Jumbo Ocean Creatures - for the children to play with within the provocation.
  • Rocks & Sand - for added texture and to mimic the beach & ocean.
  • Shells - Children can put them next to their ears to "hear" the ocean.
  • Fabric with shiny sequins - Having something shiny helps draw children's attention to the setup and is a wonderful opportunity for vocabulary building when the children are asked what the ocean looks like and what they think all the shiny parts could represent.
  • Any greenery or plants - to create the ocean vibe.
  • Fish tank props -  for some extra engagement and to create height within the provocation.


This setup can be created on a table and be moved outside or inside. Having the children play outside with this setup, offers exciting opportunity to have light effects and reflections on the shiny materials / sequins from the sun.

We hope this can inspire many more provocations that get children excited for the summer and the beach.

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