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Crafts for Kids: Sensory Bottles

Here's a fun craft you can do with your kids using supplies you probably have at home.

Kids are endlessly curious and one of the best ways to nurture their inquisitive spirits is with crafts. Making sensory bottles is great activity because the bottles are fun to create and provide mental stimulation for kids of all ages.  

A sensory bottle is a catch-all term for any bottle that’s been filled and decorated with interesting things and no two are exactly alike. In this tutorial you will learn three popular bottles that your kids can customize. Let them get their hands dirty and create, create, create!

All grocery supplies were purchased at and the crafting supplies were purchased at . You can find comparable supplies at , and .

SENSORY BOTTLE 1: BUBBLE BOTTLE

View the photo gallery for step by step pictures and instructions.

Supplies:

1 Clear bottle

Water

Dish detergent

Hot glue gun

Hot glue stick

Funnel

Food color (optional)

Glitter (optional)

Ribbon (optional)

Bells (optional)

Foam stickers (optional)

Decorations of your choice

Directions:

Gather your supplies. Plug in the hot glue gun so that it's ready when you need it.

Select a bottle, remove the label and fill it 2/3 full with water.

Add a few drops of dish soap and food coloring (optional).

Shake to distribute the food coloring and activate the bubbles.

Add glitter through a funnel (optional).

Decorate the outside of the bottle any way you want. This example uses sticky foam circles.

Apply hot glue to the inside of the cap and then screw the cap back on the bottle. This will prevent leaking.

String bells though a ribbon and then tie the ribbon on the bottle for auditory stimulation (optional).

How the Bubble Bottle stimulates the senses: The ribbon and bells provide tactile and auditory stimulation when you shake the bottle. The foam stickers are interesting to touch and the bubbles are interesting to watch as they form and then dissipate.

SENSORY BOTTLE 2: OCEAN WAVE BOTTLE

View the photo gallery for step by step pictures and instructions.

Supplies:

1 Clear bottle

Baby Oil

Water

Funnel

Hot glue gun

Hot glue stick

Blue food color (optional)

Glitter (optional)

Pipe cleaner (optional)

Bells (optional)

Foam stickers (optional)

Decorations of your choice

Directions:

Gather your supplies. Plug in the hot glue gun so that it's ready when you need it.

Select a bottle, remove the label and fill it ½ full with baby oil.

Add several drops of blue food coloring (unless you want a different color ocean).

Add glitter for sparkle (optional).

Glue the cap onto the bottle and add decorations. This example uses foam stickers, pipe cleaners and small bells.

How the Bubble Bottle stimulates the senses:  The baby oil does not mix with the water so when you shake or swirl the bottle the two liquids create a glittery wave that babies and older children love to watch. The foam stickers, pipe cleaners and bells provide tactile and auditory stimulation when you shake the bottle.

SENSORY BOTTLE 3: RELAXATION BOTTLE

View the photo gallery for step by step pictures and instructions.

Supplies:

1 Clear bottle

Light Corn Syrup

Funnel

Glitter or small metallic stars

Hot glue gun

Hot glue stick

Food coloring (optional)

Pipe cleaner (optional)

Decorations of your choice

Directions:

Gather your supplies. Plug in the hot glue gun so that it's ready when you need it.

Select a bottle, remove the label and fill it 1/3 full with light corn syrup.

Add small metallic stars, glitter or anything that interests you.

Add food coloring (optional, this example does not use food coloring).

Glue the cap onto the bottle and add decorations. This example uses a simple red pipe cleaner around the cap so as not to distract from the calming effect of the corn syrup and tiny stars as they slowly glide down the bottle.

How the Relaxation Bottle stimulates the senses:  The corn syrup slows the flow of the metallic stars, creating a calming effect as they glide down the bottle. Distractible children will find this bottle soothing to watch. Consider using fewer decorations so as not to make the bottle too stimulating, which would take away from the calming effects.  

Sensory Bottles are fun to look at and last for ages. Considering keeping them on display where you kids can revisit them often and feel proud of their accomplishment. Use holiday colors and decorations for a unique gift idea!

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