Water/Sensory Table


This was a fun little project that we were able to pull together in about a day. At the beginning of summer I started seeing various water/sand/sensory tables across the internet as activities for kids. While I am still not quite ready to deal with sand or rice I did like the idea of water. Gabe is a huge fan of baths and the idea of him splashing in water seemed like something he would love. I also really liked the idea of having something unique for him to play with when we couldn’t get out of the house or I desperately needed something to keep him from bouncing off the walls. And the best part? We got to build it.


We took inspiration from two projects. We followed the basic structure and materials list from this one and took inspiration for the top piece from here. We were able to find all the materials at Home Depot, even the storage container. We opted for a pvc pipe cutter instead of a saw for cutting the pipe and considered it a good to have in the garage type items.

Cutting pipe

The one trouble we ran into was not being able to find ¾ inch 3-way side outlet elbow at Home Depot. They had ½ inch but not ¾! Ran into the same thing at Ace. The internet says they exist but these two stores? Nope. We hemmed and hawed and didn’t want this turn into a wild goose chase. Because let’s face it, road blocks like these turn into a goose chase. So we found a janky solution, an elbow with a ½ inch threaded side outlet and a threaded ¾ inch adapter.

All the parts.

Cutting and assembly was easy. I quickly realized how easy it is to work with pvc! Especially when don’t have to glue it. With the cuts there was a bit of accounting for how much the pipe would go into the fittings. But other than that. It was together in no time.

We bought some extra fittings to play around with what we could do on top. While what we came up with worked, we decided that to do the really cool stuff you really need a bigger table. Despite, I’m quite please with the end result. And I think Gabe is too.


One Month Later
I would like to say that we have used it on a regular basis but we haven’t. But it isn’t due to lack of interest. It has simply been a very grey and cold summer on the coastside this year. I’ve learned we get much more breeze/wind protection on the back deck than the front so I’ve moved it back there.

Overall I’m really happy with the project. I like that we built it and didn’t buy it. Even though summer is winding down, we will look for opportunities to fill it up and splash about. For now I am leaving it assembled. But when it is time to break it down for the winter? Best part! It all fits inside itself! Huzza!

He loves it!

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Dana says:

    He looks as though he really does enjoy it. ☺ Good going, mama!

  2. Noah Rogers says:

    This is a great project. I am looking to build a number of these for our church so that the preschool kids can have something to do this summer. I looked into other designs and found another idea here: https://formufit.com/pages/pvc-kids-sand-and-water-table, but I like how your’s has the ‘overhang’ with the funnels. Great job!

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