What a new discovery for my child care.... Sensory bottles. I have never heard of them before in my 29 years of child care. Was I living under a rock or what? I decided to try my hand at them while waiting to attend a class on sensory bottles and this is a little information on sensory bottles and how I have put them together.....
So what are sensory bottles? Sensory bottles are made using recycled water bottles. You can fill the bottles with an assorted of items such as colored beads, pom poms, small plastic insects, googly eyes, the possibilities are endless. Just as long as they fit into the bottles. The purpose of a sensory bottle is for children to use their senses to explore the bottles. Roll, shake, tip them over and observe how items move around in the bottle.
I bought Voss water bottles in the 11 oz size because I love the size, they are great for little hands, and they store nicely. I bought the most recent case of Voss water bottles from WalMart on line. I got free shipping because I ordered quite a few.
You can use the water from the bottles, or use distilled water. I felt tap water made the bottles too cloudy and I wanted a more clear sensory bottle.
The tops of the water bottles are small, so keep in mind when you want to add items that they will fit into the bottles. I filled the following bottles with the items, added distilled water, used hot glue around the lip of the bottles and placed the cover on. You need to move fast attaching the cover so that you can get the cover on tight before the hot glue cools. (I also wore a rubber glove from doing dishes to give me the best possible gripe on the cover.).
Here are a few of the bottles I have done so far, and it's just the beginning. I promise to share more of my fun creations once I get more done.
Color Sensory Bottles
Colors sensory bottles I'm making to put into my art center. I have 4 completed, and having to re-do my green one. The green one was the first one I made, and I didn't fill the bottle up completely so I'm not happy with it. Trial and error for me.
My color bottle red I put in a balloon, (I knotted the balloon because again trial and error, I found the beads were going into the mouth of the balloon). pom poms, marker, beads, train, crayon, and other small items that were red.
A suggestion before adding distilled water and sealing is make sure you have all items you want in the bottle. One addition to my color bottles I plan for the future is to do a search and find card. Take a picture of each item, place on a card, laminate and let children using a dry eraser marker- mark the card as they find an item.
Sensory bottles don't have to be limited to water. Using dry ingredients can make some pretty interesting sensory bottles. The bottles above were made using popcorn kernels. I placed colored googly eyes in the first bottle, plastic insects in the second one and small plastic letters. You can use other items such as sand, and other items.
I have made a Easter and baby sensory bottle. Again these are a couple of my earlier sensory bottles and will be re-done because they are not completely full of water, but the picture gives you an idea on some additional ideas. Make holiday sensory bottles. My Easter sensory bottle includes small plastic Easter bunnies, baby chicks and colored beads.
Make sure to seal when you finish any sensory bottles that you made to eliminate any messes, and I promise to share any additional sensory bottles because like I said.... These bottles are just the tip of the ice berg.
Helping to clean some of the sticky from the Voss label is the label from the water bottle. Remove the label and using the sticky side keep pressing it against the sticky reside on the bottle. It will remove that sticky leftovers and leave you with a smooth bottle to create with.