Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Sensory Bottles

Sensory bottles are a fun and easy craft for you and your child to make at home. This craft will require adult hands and close supervision to create. We have about a dozen sensory bottles in our classroom. The children really enjoy playing with them.

The bottles also provide a variety of learning experiences for our preschoolers. Because of the variety of liquids and items in each bottle, there is a lot of speculation and discussion about the liquids, the movement, the letters and items inside each bottle.

It is always funny to watch them experience the bottles for the first time because of course the first thing they try to do is remove the lids. Good thing this is not my first rodeo!

You will need-
***Several 16-20 oz. clean plastic bottles-I used some flavored water bottles because I like the smooth sides for easy viewing but any plastic bottles will work.
***Liquids-water, baby oil, vegetable oil, hair gel (of various consistencies), shampoo, liquid dish soap, corn syrup. You want liquids that move differently. You also want the color to be translucent so your child can see the items in the bottle.
***Small items to place in the bottle-buttons, beads, beads w/letters and numbers, seashells, small rocks, sand, small Legos, fun foam shapes, cut up Mardi Gras beads. Lots of possibilities!!!
***Funnel for easier pouring
***Hot glue gun or super glue (adult job only!)

1-Have your child place the items in the bottle.
2-Add the liquid until 2/3 or 3/4 full. Your child may or may not need help with this step. I filled my bottles pretty full.
3-Adult glues the lid on (I used super glue and have had the bottles at school for over three years without a mishap) and let set to dry for a few minutes.

A few pointers and hints-
*Use sand and water for a beach bottle.
*Corn syrup and Mardi Gras beads look like a lava lamp.
*Mix water and vegetable oil. Color the water.
*Use beads with letters and numbers to help recognize the ABC's and 123's.
*Discuss the various liquids. Why do some move fast and others slow?
*Write about the experience and the activity in your child's journal.