How to make a Sensory Bottle

We love to play with sensory bottles.  Sensory bottles are an amazingly simple way to explore, calm, and investigate. This round ups of sensory bottles inspired me to share creative ways to make sensory bottles.  If you are looking for a sensory play idea that is mess-free and can be used as a learning tool as well as a therapy tool, then sensory bottles are the way to go. 

Sensory bottles for self-regulation, calming, and sensory input. How to make sensory bottles for learning and sensory.

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What is a sensory bottle?

You can find many versions of sensory bottles online.  So what is a sensory bottle?  They are tools to calm down and encourage self-regulation.  Sensory bottles are a visual and physical tool for calming and relaxing the body.  A child (or adult!) can use a sensory bottle when they feel anxious, overwhelmed, “wound-up”, or overstimulated and use the sense of proprioception as they shake the sensory bottle and watch the contents shift.  This visual cue is a great calming strategy for many children.

Featured post: These Waterbead sensory bottles from Living Montessori Now are beautiful!  I love the bright colors that waterbeads provide.  We’ll definitely be making these!

RELATED READ: Sensory Play Ideas

How to make a sensory bottle:

Sensory bottles are so easy to create.  The possibilities are endless when it comes to additions.  Grab a few plastic bottles, glue to secure the lid (Glue is the most important part!), and a few of these items:
To make a liquid sensory bottle add:
cooking oil
Add pieces to the liquid base:
nature (acorns/leaves/flowers/sticks/rocks…)
paper clips
pipe cleaners
Or make a dry sensory bottle by pouring in:
dry pasta
colored sand
spit peas

Adding a learning component by dropping in:
Sight Words

You can use items like foam letters and numbers, dominoes, foam craft sheets, or magnets.

More ways to make Sensory Bottles: 
Add flowers (My Little 3 and Me) or other items from nature for exploration.  
Use cooking oil (Happy Hooligans) to make beautiful ocean-like waves.  You can even add themed items to the liquid to make an ocean discovery bottle (The Imagination Tree).
Instead of liquid additions, add colored items to make rainbow bottles (Fun at Home with Kids).  You can even add a glowing component (Kids Activities Blog) to the bottle for nighttime calming.
Sensory bottles can had a learning aspect too.  Add letters to make a find and seek bottle (The Jenny Evolution) or sight words.

We’ve used sensory bottles as a sensory tool many times. Along with crayon play dough, they are one of our favorite ways to to get proprioceptive input through play.

How to make sensory bottles


MORE creative sensory ideas that you will love:

Baby Safe Waterbeads Sensory Play

Waterbead Sensory Box

Creative Scissor Activities for Kids

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