There are so many awesome sensory bottle ideas! We love dollar store sensory bottle ideas because they’re an inexpensive, mess-free way to spark your child’s interest in the world around them. They are an easy and fun activity to make. They can be created with a fun theme and there are many benefits to exploring with a sensory bottle!
How to Make Your Sensory Bottle
Some great sensory bottle ideas combine glitter, sequins, craft beads, gems, tiny toys, and any other tiny items that may be interesting to look at. Get creative and use what you have around the house or pick up some items at your local dollar store.
Sensory bottles are fun and inexpensive for kids. Let them shake it, flip it over and watch the items inside of the bottle. We added an element of sound in these sensory bottles but they can also be made with glitter or sequins and be used as a calming bottle.
I also decided to add water to one of our sensory bottles which is a simple way to change the flow of the items inside the bottle. I haven’t found a huge need to tape or glue our water bottle caps shut, but you can if you’re worried about a mess. Especially if you have kids that may be determined to empty the contents of the bottle. Sometimes, I will use decorative tape to add a pop of color to our theme.
Sensory bottles can be a fun toy to use at home or during car rides! I love to pull them out when my little one is in her highchair for mealtimes. I also have a couple in my office to entertain my daughter if there is something I need to do. Our sensory bottles are new and interesting and are enough of a distraction, I can get a couple of things done. I don’t keep them with her usual bin of toys so they are new and exciting. This is also an easy craft to make during a party or play date and one that all the kids will love.
Sensory Bottle Supplies
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Sensory bottle supplies can vary! You may be able to use items from around your home. The items below are items I purchased at Dollar Tree.
- Plastic clear bottle. I found these lunch storage tower containers to be a new twist for a sensory bottle. Here is another option for clear plastic bottles if your store doesn’t carry the ones above.
- Rubbing alcohol to remove the glue from the bottle
- Decorations: gems, beads, sequins, pom poms, dried goods that can be found at your local dollar store. In case you aren’t interested in a trip to the store, this craft supplies kit gives a lot of variety for making sensory bottles and can be purchased online.
- Optional materials – liquids (baby oil, water)
How to Use Your Sensory Bottle
Sensory bottles are easy and inexpensive to make. Yet, they give children an opportunity to explore, discover, imagine, create, and learn! They are an incredibly simple way to incorporate sensory play in your own home, in the car, or classroom.
Many children are too young to play with certain materials. This is where sensory bottles come in. They allow children to use their senses while it also keeps clean up to a minimum. Sensory bottles can be visually or audibly stimulating.
Sensory bottles come in different shapes, sizes and use different materials. There really is no right or wrong way to make a sensory bottle.
Sensory Bottle Benefits
Fine Motor Skills: Fine motor skills are exercised while manipulating the bottle.
Language: Children are able to expand their vocabulary. They can get experience by asking questions or describing their experience.
Social Skills: Children learn about sharing, playing, and communicating with others during their play.
Math and Science: Children can make observations about the objects, practice counting, shape recognition, and learning about cause and effect while manipulating sensory bottles.
Sensory bottles can be great for all ages. Older children can help create them and younger children can experience materials that are too small for them.
Tips for Sensory Bottles
- Secure the lid with a glue gun or tape around the edges. Put the glue around the edges to prevent leaks and also to prevent your kids from opening it and spilling the contents. Once the glue has dried your bottle is ready to use!
- Use the sensory bottles with supervision. The small pieces inside could pose a choking hazard.
- Use either the same material on both ends of this particular lunch storage tower container or you can an alternate material. I also made one and filled the dressing container with small plastic beads so there was an element of sound when you shake the sensory bottle.
Other Sensory Bottle Themes
Sensory bottles can be made out of many preschool themes. Some of my favorites are glitter, colors, seasons, and holiday-themed.
- alphabet beads for letter recognition
- beach or ocean in a bottle
- glitter for a calming
- magnet bottle
More sensory activities
- Glitter Calm Down Sensory Bottles are fun! So colorful and easy to make.
- These 5 Hide-and-Seek Sensory Play ideas are quick to prep, low cost, and using materials from around the house.
- This Sensory Tactile Box on a Dollar Store Budget post is packed with ideas to engage little ones in sensory materials.