DIY Water And Sand Tubs

February 16, 2018Kara Woolery
Blog post

A DIY Water Table and DIY Sand Table can be a saving grace throughout the summer! My girls have LOVED these throughout the last two summers, and I can’t wait to pull them back out again now that the weather is warming up.

DIY Water Table and DIY Sand Table using storage tubs, toys, water, and sand.Now I know what you are thinking … Kara these are not actually tables … I know I know. They are really tubs but no one searches for water and sand tubs, and I wanted you to be able and find this fantastic Summer hack.

A DIY Water Table and A DIY Sand Table are perfect for the summer months, and can be moved into your garage for the colder months for continued use! These tubs are great for sensory play and outdoor play.

When I first made these, we had two sweet girls who were going to get great use out of them, and we now have four cute girls who are going to deplete the sand be mid-Summer LOL. You can read more on our fostering and adoption journey here if you are interested how we went from one girl to four in less than 2 years.

Incredibly easy DIY sand and water table for the summer.

DIY Water Table & DIY Sand Table (Tubs)


  • 2 Large Storage Tubs and Lids
  • 2-3 Bags of 0.5 Cu Ft Play Sand (I got mine at Walmart)
  • Water and Sand Play Toys (you can order regular ones here or *non-toxic plastic ones here

*We have been on a journey the last few months to start eliminating some toxins from our home. Including some of the plastics found in some toys. I usually only worry if it goes in their mouth, but wanted you to have the option. As I know some of my readers are looking for less-toxic and non-toxic items for their homes.


Fill your DIY Water Table with your water toys and put lid on. We like to fill our water tub every time the kids play with it then dump it out and let the toys and everything dry out thoroughly before putting the lid back on. This way you should not get any mold. You could also leave it full of water for a few days, but our girls get the water filthy, so we dump it.

Fill your DIY Sand table with your play sand and sand toys. Be sure to keep the lid on so moisture stays out of your sand.

TIP – The sand tub will be extremely heavy! Be sure to place it where you would like to keep it for the majority of the summer. My husband was able to move this by himself, but I could not even lift it

DIY Sand Table and Water Table for hours and hours of fun Summer sensory play.Our sweet girl and her friends had a blast playing in the sand and water tables. I was in shock by how long they were entertained with these fun sensory play bins.

When I initially wanted to make a DIY Water Table and a DIY Sand Table I started searching on Pinterest. Everything I found required building of some sort … No thanks! I wanted something easy and quick for this fun outdoor Summer kids activity. I saw some tubs at the store and thought ….AHH HA!

Portable water and sand sensory play for kids or classrooms for teachers.

Sand & Water Table Toys

The less toxic plastic ones are on the top row and the regular ones are on the bottom row. I don’t worry about the cruddy stuff in plastic too much if it is not a toy going in my kids mouths. But currently we have a baby and everything goes in her mouth LOL.

Sand and water summer play ideas for kids.Oh, my goodness guys … Tay is so tiny in this picture. She was 3.5 here and she is now 5.5. This was while we were still fostering her. Brings tears to my eyes to think shes now my precious daughter forever. I can’t imagine my life without her.

Be sure when you are not playing with the DIY Sand Table to keep the lid on the tub. This will help keep bugs out, and allow your sand to stay dry during storms. We moved our tubs to a small play deck in our backyard! Once the cold winter months hit, we plan to move them on a tarp in the garage.

These sand and water tubs would also be perfect for daycares or teachers classrooms with little ones.

DIY Water Table and DIY Sand Table. An incredibly easy and affordable solution to building a sand and water table. These tubs are genius!!

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