Rainbow Friendship Sensory Bottle

friendship sensory bottle

This rainbow sensory bottle is a simple friendship sensory activity to throw together, and uses whatever materials you have in your home. We used rainbow string to make our sensory bottle for use as a calming tool for visual and proprioceptive input.  We made these friendship sensory bottles as a friendship activity that helped to work on cooperation and specific aspects of social emotional development.

The reason for making sensory bottles is simple: Shake a sensory bottle and watch the contents slowly fall for visual sensory input.  There is just something relaxing about watching a sensory bottle.  This rainbow sensory bottle is colorful and packs a fine motor punch when the kids are involved in the making process.  

Kids can make this friendship sensory bottle as a sensory activity with friends to explore social emotional learning and qualities of a friend.

How to make a friendship sensory bottle

First, gather a friend. Then, you’ll need a couple of empty bottles and some materials. You could gather craft supplies like glitter, sequence, string, craft pom poms, or any materials really.

This sensory bottle was super simple to make.  We used just a few materials:

Affiliate links are below.

Friendship Thread (Ours was from www.craftprojectideas.com)
Clear body wash
Water
Recycled Bottle
Super Glue
Clear glass marbles

Rainbow sensory bottle is a sensory friendship activity for kids.

To make the rainbow sensory bottle, first cut the friendship thread into 1-2 inch lengths.  

Have the friends take turns filling each other’s friendship sensory bottles with the materials. You could make each bottle the same, or they can be as different as two friends are!

While filling the sensory bottles, this is a nice time to talk about qualities of a friend.

Talk about how different each friendship bottle will be even through they may contain many of the same materials.

Talk about how different people are too, and no matter what is inside of one, the bottle will always look different with it’s swirls and whirls of sensory materials.

You can discuss qualities of a friend: companionship, trustworthiness, listening skills, being helpful, and working together. When friends shake their sensory bottles, they can recall these qualities.

Each child can fill their bottle (and their friends’ bottle) with the thread.

This is a great exercise in fine motor skills to work on tripod grasp and neat pincer grasp.  My toddler and preschooler really got into pushing the thread into the bottle.

Friendship activity with a rainbow sensory bottle.

Once all of the thread has been added to the bottle, pour in about 1/2 inch of body wash.  

Amounts are approximate and will vary depending on the recycled bottle you use for your sensory bottle.  

Add water to the top.  

As you add water, suds will form.  Continue adding water to allow the suds to spill over the top of the bottle.  

When MOST of the bubbles have poured out of the bottle, twist on the lid.  

Now, give the sensory bottle a big shake.  This is the job for the kids.  Have then shake the bottle to mix in the gel.  

Now, as you shake, more bubbles will form but let them settle.  After the gel and water has mixed, add a couple of the glass gems to the bottle. These help to mix and stir the rainbow thread within the water-gel combo.  An added bonus of the marbles is an added bit of weight in the bottle.  This gives the sensory bottle some heavy work to the sensory play.  Shaking a bottle that is heavy provides proprioceptive input. 


More Friendship Sensory Activities

Add these friendship sensory bottles to these movement and sensory activities to develop friendship skills:

  1. Use the social-emotional skills resource, Exploring Books Through Play: 50 Activities based on Books About Friendship, Acceptance, and Empathy, which offers multi-sensory activities while exploring friendship, acceptance, and empathy through popular (and amazing) children’s books.
  2. Address turn-taking with blocks as kids communicate and practice taking turns.
  3. Use play and everyday toys to explore and develop turn-taking, communication, sharing, and problem solving.
  4. Inspire exploration of friendship skill development. Here are children’s books and activities that develop friendship skills.
  5. Make a sensory monster craft and talk about qualities of a friend with this Leonardo The Terrible Monster craft.
  6. Pair these activities with the free friendship slide decks that are now on the site: 
  • Writing about Friendship Slide Deck – writing prompts, writing letters to friends, and handwriting activities to develop friendship skills, all on a free interactive Google slide deck. 
  • Personal Space Friendship Skills Slide Deck– Friendship involves allowing personal space, and body awareness and all of this is part of the social skill development that some kids struggle with. Use this free Google slide deck to work on body awareness and personal space.


Want to see more rainbow sensory bottles? Rainbow Counting Bears Sensory Bottle | Preschool Inspirations Rainbow Pipe Cleaner Sensory Bottle | Mom Inspired Life Rainbow Button Sensory Bottle | Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tail Pot of Gold Discovery Bottle | Sunny Day Family Rainbow Glitter Sensory Bottle | Rhythms of Play Glitter Jars in a Rainbow of Colors | Fun-A-Day Rainbow Alphabet Sensory Bottle | Modern Preschool Rainbow Polka Dot Discovery Bottle | Still Playing School

Rainbow friendship thread sensory bottle

 

Looking for more sensory bottles?  These are our favorites:

 
 
 
 

 

 

Colleen Beck, OTR/L is an occupational therapist with 20 years experience, graduating from the University of Pittsburgh in 2000. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. As the creator, author, and owner of the website and its social media channels, Colleen strives to empower those serving kids of all levels and needs. Want to collaborate? Send an email to contact@theottoolbox.com.

Leonardo the Terrible Monster Game About Being a Friend

Leonardo the Terrible Monster activity

You might know that we love to partner great children’s books with crafts and activities.  Today’s hands-on activity is a Leonardo the Terrible Monster activity and it’s one that uses an amazing monster book to help kids talk about the qualities of a friend. Add this to your list of friendship activities, or when working on social emotional skills.

By the way, be sure to check out all of our book activities.  It’s been fun creating book related activities! Today’s book is Leonardo the Terrible Monster by Mo Williams.  We created a monster craft and game where we talked about friendship.  

Leonardo the Terrible Monster craft and game to explore friendship with kids.  Talk about the qualities that makes a good friend with kids.  This book and activity is perfect for preschool and play dates!


(This post contains affiliate links.) 

Have you read the book, Leonardo, the Terrible Monster?  This is such a cool book, all about a Monster who is not so scary.  

In fact, Leonardo is terrible at being terrible.  Leonardo tries to find the most scare-able kid there is so that he can scare the tuna salad out of him.  Meet Sam.  Well, it turns out the Sam has had a bad day and is not in fact scared by Leonardo; he’s sad.  Leonardo and Sam become wonderful friends.  

This book is such a fun read with it’s big, fun font and simple illustrations.  It was easy to make a game based on Leonardo the Terrible Monster.  This game is all about what makes a friend.  We talked about qualities of a friend (and decided scaring our friends is not a good quality!)

Leonardo The Terrible Monster Book Craft and Game

We started by making a monster craft using coffee filters and fork painted fur.  For the Monster friend game, you can make a monster craft using any Monster craft, but this one was fun and easy!  You’ll need a few materials to make the coffee filter monsters:  

  • coffee filters
  • Plastic Forks
  • paint (this is my favorite brand!)
  • Paint Brush
  • Monster-ish decorations like pipe cleaners, googly eyes, yarn, or any crafting material
Leonardo the Terrible Monster craft and game to explore friendship with kids.  Talk about the qualities that makes a good friend with kids.  This book and activity is perfect for preschool and play dates!
Leonardo the Terrible Monster craft and game to explore friendship with kids.  Talk about the qualities that makes a good friend with kids.  This book and activity is perfect for preschool and play dates!

 

To make the coffee filter monsters, first flatten and paint the coffee filters.  

Add color and fur texture by pressing the back of the fork into paint and then pressing onto the coffee filter.  

Let the paint dry and then glue on details of the monsters.  It was fun to see how different each of our monsters looked.  

We then used these monster crafts in a friendship game.

Monster “What is a Friend” Game for Kids

Once your monster friends are dry, hang them on the wall for a game about friends!  

This color matching game was perfect for my preschooler (and her little sister who loves to do whatever her big sister does!)    

Talk about the colors and details of each monster on the wall.  

Discuss how each monster is different, but they all have feelings and might end up becoming a great friend. We talked about how friendship doesn’t have anything to do with appearances or visual qualities, but of the specific qualities of a friend, or how a person (or monster) acts like a friend to others.  

We talked about what exactly it means to be a friend.  

These are some of the concepts covered in our social emotional skills resource, Exploring Books Through Play: 50 Activities based on Books About Friendship, Acceptance, and Empathy, which offers multi-sensory activities while exploring friendship, acceptance, and empathy through popular (and amazing) children’s books.

Then, to play the monster game, we played a version of “I Spy”.  I said that I could see a monster who has blue fur.

My daughter would then go over and point to the monster that had blue fur and would name a quality of a friend that the monster might have. This extended the learning of friendship concepts further, and added movement, visual perceptual skills, color recognition, and more.

This is such a great movement and sensory-based preschool activity to learn about friendship skills! 

Leonardo the Terrible Monster craft and game to explore friendship with kids.  Talk about the qualities that makes a good friend with kids.  This book and activity is perfect for preschool and play dates!

Qualities of a Friend

(according to my kids):

It was fun to talk with my kids (later my 8 year old came over to see what the fun was about and joined us) as we discussed qualities of a friend.  Some of the things we came up with were:

  • A friend is someone who helps.
  • A friend cares about their friends.
  • A friend helps people at school.
  • A friend asks others to play with them.
  • A friend tells the truth.
  • A friend takes turns.
Leonardo the Terrible Monster craft and game to explore friendship with kids.  Talk about the qualities that makes a good friend with kids.  This book and activity is perfect for preschool and play dates!

  What qualities of a friend can you and your kids come up with?

Leonardo the Terrible Monster craft and game to explore friendship with kids.  Talk about the qualities that makes a good friend with kids.  This book and activity is perfect for preschool and play dates!

Stop by to see what the other bloggers in the Book Cub Play Dates series have created based on Leonardo, the Terrible Monster.  You’ll have all the details you need to create a book themed play date!   Monster Matching Busy Bag from Fun a Day Paint Chip Monsters from Craftulate Play Dough Monsters from Still Playing School

 
 

 

 
Stop by and see some of our favorite book related activities for kids:
 Big Red Barn puppets  
 
 
hands-on activities to explore social emotional development through children's books.

Love exploring books with hands-on play?

Grab our NEW book, Exploring Books Through Play: 50 Activities based on Books About Friendship, Acceptance, and Empathy, that explores friendship, acceptance, and empathy through popular (and amazing) children’s books!  It’s 50 hands-on activities that use math, fine motor skills, movement, art, crafts, and creativity to support social emotional development.
 
 
 
 
 
You’ll also love these free friendship slide decks that are now on the site:
 
Writing about Friendship Slide Deck – writing prompts, writing letters to friends, and handwriting activities to develop friendship skills, all on a free interactive Google slide deck.
 
Personal Space Friendship Skills Slide Deck– Friendship involves allowing personal space, and body awareness and all of this is part of the social skill development that some kids struggle with. Use this free Google slide deck to work on body awareness and personal space.