Here are some sorting activities you can do with free materials and “found” materials. Find more sorting activities on the math sorting page.
Seashells can be collected at the beach or purchased in a bag at a craft store. This tray came from Big Lots and was originally a planter, but it makes a great sorting tray.
I always have tons of buttons that I collect from the extras on new clothing. Ask families to collect them also. These are sorted by the type of hole they have: 2 holes, 4 holes, & a loop hole on the back. They can also be sorted by shape or color.
These were old keys that were donated to my classroom. Children can sort them in different ways.
These “baby toys” came from a craft store in the area where baby shower items are sold. The kids really like these. We use a plastic chip tray for a sorting tray.
A variety of bells were purchased at a craft store.
Children sort coins by type: penny, nickel, dime, quarter.
Children can sort seeds into cups, or sort and glue them on paper. Read more about Seed Sorting here.
Children sort the four types of nuts into four bowls. We use the tongs to pick up the nuts which adds fine motor practice to the activity. Read more about nut sorting here.