The Step2 Dino Dig Sand and Water Table is the perfect activity and play table for dinosaur-loving kids and toddlers! With so many features and stations, it has because a summer lifesaver for us, and we're excited to share our thoughts along with an idea on how to make a dinosaur sensory bin. Don't miss the details below on how to win one yourself!
Thanks to Step2 for sending us the Step2 Dino Dig Sand & Water Table!
My kids are really into dinosaurs lately. It all started when the neighbor kid had a paleontologist birthday party, and ever since, my kids have been digging up the yard, looking for dinosaur bones. Combine my sons' digging habits and my daughter's fascination with pouring and dumping water, I knew that there could be no better summer activity for us than the Step2 Dino Dig Sand & Water Table!
I received this play table at no cost to facilitate this review, and I was shocked with how lightweight the box was when it arrived. I attribute that to the sand bag not being included, but I knew bags of play sand were cheap and easy to find at any hardware store. I was also pleased to find only a small number of bags and pieces, and both my 4 and 5-year-old were so eager to help.
How to Make a Dino Sensory Bin
Assembly took us maybe 25 minutes, and that was mostly because there were small hands helping and because we started out using a screwdriver the old-fashioned way to secure the three legs onto the table. It's not difficult to screw these in by hand, but by the end of the assembly, when the longest screws needed to go in, we asked Dad to quickly finish the job with his electric screwdriver.
I like that a plastic stopper rests at the bottom of the water portion, so that draining dirty water is quick and easy and doesn't involve dumping the entire table over. Releasing the drain and taking a hose to the structure would only take a minute and minimal muscle power.
The water portion of the table can be filled with 5 or 6 pitchers of water, so when you don't have a hose near by, filling it from the kitchen sink doesn't take too much time at all.
We love these squish-able, colorful dinos! They are made of a soft plastic with a hole in the bottom so they can be squeezed and they float in the water. This table also includes two large cups which are great for scooping and pouring, and the slotted cup works well for showering the dinosaurs. Both have handles that fit on the side of the table for when play time is over.
The gray volcano piece is designed like a waterfall that drains back into the water basin, but it also acts as a cover for the sand table, to keep the sand dry when water is the activity of choice. It also neatly encloses all the extra tools and dinosaurs at the end of the day.
My daughter's favorite activity is repeatedly giving the dinosaurs baths and then letting them rest under the palm tree.
Once completely assembled, my husband and I sat back and watched in awe while all three of our kids went to town for a good part of the afternoon, all playing fairly peacefully together. With so many objects to hold and space around the bin, everyone always has something to do and it is easy to play together while role playing or just splashing around.
What makes this table so fantastic is that it is a water AND sand table! I bought this 50-lb. bag of play sand at the hardware store for less than $4, and we only needed around 5-7 pounds to fill up the digging space.
To take this already-exciting sand table to the next educational level, we added more elements like letter recognition and early reading skills by incorporating some plastic bones and river rocks so that my older kids could be more involved and interested for even longer.
I used a permanent white marker pen to write letters on smooth river rocks and buried them in the sand for the kids to find.
By the way, the tan two-sided shovel is great for raking and digging to the bottom of the bin, and then scooping your treasures up and out of the sand. At the very bottom of the table, you'll find dinosaur footprints molded into the plastic!
My kids have loved hunting for the right letters to make words! My preschooler can search, find, and identify the individual letters, while my kindergartner can combine them to make new words or at least sound them out and experiment with letter combinations! They both can at least arrange all the rocks in alphabetical order, and my youngest daughter is getting exposure to letters. I'm so happy and so impressed with how one play table to can be so entertaining for all of my kids, from age 2 to 6, and with a small addition of letter rocks, we have an educational and interesting sensory bin!
Disclosure: I (Camille) received the Step2 Dino Dig Sand and Water Table at no cost to facilitate this review and create a sensory bin. All opinions are my own. Amazon links are affiliate links. One winner will be randomly selected using the Giveaway Tools random selector and notified via email. Once notified, the winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, or Google. Void where prohibited.
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