Valentines Day Sensory Bottle

Have you tried making a sensory bottle yet?  These a super easy and creative ways to encourage learning through a calming visual sensory tool.  We’ve shared awesome ways to make them and have a great new idea to bring you today, and just in time for Valentine’s Day: this heart waterbead sensory bottle! It’s a great Valentine’s Day activity to add to your therapy toolbox.
I love sensory bottles to use as a calming and quieting sensory tool.  My kids love making them and the fun of discovering items in the bottle.  When you add a learning component like math or literacy it’s even better!
Valentine's Day Sensory Bottle with waterbeads and hearts

Valentine’s Day Sensory Bottle

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We made this discovery bottle very quickly one day.  I had a bunch of pink and rose colored Waterbeads
ready to go.  I poured them into a big bin and had my kids help me fill the bottle.  
Depending on the age of your child, you may want to prepare the sensory bottle yourself and just present the finished tool to your child.  My kids had a blast playing in the water beads and placing them into the bottle, though.  It was a sensory experience in itself!
We used a regular peanut butter plastic jar that had been cleaned out.  (Get the kids in on the cleaning job too!)
Valentine's Day Sensory Bottle with waterbeads and hearts
Use any combination of Water beads.  You can find them in the dollar store in the craft section or many large stores in the floral section.  I love grabbing a bunch of different colors at once, though and get them online here.  It’s hard to find a lot of different colors in the stores, so online is easier for me.  
Fine Motor Water Beads Activity
Have the kids fill the bottle with water beads for a fine motor activity.  Manipulating the Water beads and dropping them into the bottle is a nice way to encourage in-hand manipulation and tripod grasp.
Once the bottle is 3/4 full with water beads, add a handful of foam hearts.  Kids can slide these into the sensory bottle.  
You can add superglue to the lid of the plastic bottle if you are worried about little ones opening the bottle and dumping the contents.  We just used ours as is and did not glue the lid shut.  This way, we could have a nice storage container for the water beads and play with them again.
Valentine's Day Sensory Bottle with waterbeads and hearts
Now play!  Shake the jar and count the hearts.  Ask your child to find all red hearts or all pink hearts.  Use this sensory bottle as a calming tool when kids need to focus or attend.
Looking for more Valentine’s Day sensory bottles?  Stop by and see what the Discovery Bottle team have created this month:
Color Mixing Sensory Bottle | Preschool Inspirations
I Spy Love Sensory Bottle | Modern Preschool
Heart Glitter Jar | Fun-A-Day
Valentine's Day Sensory Bottle with waterbeads and hearts

Let us know if you make a Valentine’s Day sensory bottle!  I would love to see your version.  

Looking for more sensory bottles?  These are our favorites:

Colleen Beck, OTR/L has been an occupational therapist since 2000, working in school-based, hand therapy, outpatient peds, EI, and SNF. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. Read her story about going from an OT making $3/hour (after paying for kids’ childcare) to a full-time OT resource creator for millions of readers. Want to collaborate? Send an email to