The Ultimate List of Sensory Bottles: A Round-Up for Preschool, Pre-k, and Kindergarten
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Sensory bottles have so many benefits for little learners, so I created the ultimate sensory bottles round-up to make it easier for you to pick the ones you need in your classroom or home! There are sensory bottle ideas for the seasons, some holidays, and special events during the year.
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Why to Use Sensory Bottles in the Classroom
Sensory bottles are a fun tool I use in my classroom for a few reasons. I keep some in my calm-down corner/ safe place, by the bathroom door, at the science center, and in random places around the room.
Sensory bottles can be used to…
- help students calm their bodies and minds when they are overwhelmed with big emotions
- assist students in waiting for something or in line (I keep 3-5 sensory bottles where students wait in line to wash their hands)
- as a fidget during center time or a read-aloud
- engage students in a learning theme
- explore cause and effect
- allows students to engage in non-messy sensory experience
- explore something that isn’t safe or easy to touch or explore, like weather sensory bottles, discovery bottles with tiny pieces, or types of pollution sensory bottles
- increase language development when they share about what they see inside
Tips for Sensory Bottles in the Classroom
- No need to get fancy or overthink the storage! I keep mine in a plastic crate and have kept them for years.
- Seal them with hot glue or superglue. I place glue on the rim and spirals and then screw on the lid.
- Thicker plastic bottles are better for durability, but you still need to be able to see through them. I like these bottles from Amazon or a Voss water bottle.
Giant Sensory Bottle Round-Up
Basic Sensory Bottles! Make a very basic sensory bottle by following this tutorial. I also use this recipe to make props for my dramatic play area (spray bottles, oil bottles, medicine, food, etc.) These bottles can have food coloring, baby oil, water, or soap and are so much fun for little hands.
Letter Sensory Bottles! These letter sensory bottles are a great way to practice letter recognition in a fun and engaging manner. You can add all kinds of fillers with the letter manipulatives to make them personalized for a certain student’s needs. Harder objects may be too noisy for some students, and others may not like the water-filled sensory bottles. You can also make letter sensory bags for students; see how here.
Number Sensory Bottles! Need a way to engage some reluctant learners in numbers? Make number sensory bottles! Students can play an I Spy game while they turn, shake, and roll the sensory bottles. Head to the blog post for step-by-step directions to make the bottles and get a number hunt FREEBIE!
Shape Sensory Bottles! Give students another opportunity to practice shapes with these shape sensory bottles and FREE shape hunt worksheets. These are great for giving students a task when they complete their work early or need a little something to keep them busy.
Color Word Sensory Bottles! These color word sensory bottles are great for students to practice color identification and color word recognition. You can put anything inside the bottles to match the colors. I used shredded paper, but all kinds of fillers would be fun! The best part is you can get rid of odds and ends from your classroom, and young kids will love all the different textures.
Name Sensory Tubes! These mini name sensory tubes are a great gift idea for your students or a wonderful name manipulative or center in the classroom. Students twist and turn to find the letters in their name or their classmate’s names. I like these mini tubes for this project.
Winter Sensory Bottles! Make a snowman, snowflake, and pine sensory bottle to have all winter long. These can be used for a variety of winter themes and give students different sensory options. You can change the filler to things you already have in your classroom.
Christmas Sensory Bottles! These 4 Christmas sensory bottles are so festive and adorable for Christmas time. Loom bands make a wonderful filler with water! They move around slowly and swirl and twirl in the bottles.
Gingerbread Sensory Bottles! A gingerbread theme is always popular during the winter months, and these sensory bottles are sure to be a hit in your classroom. I like to put tape on the lids to make them even more colorful.
Valentine’s Sensory Bottles! Love is in the air with these fun Valentine’s sensory bottles. Use old candy hearts, pink, red, and white confetti, rice, pom poms, and glitter to make some adorable Valentine’s bottles!
Spring Sensory Bottles! Get ready for warmer weather and new growth with these spring sensory bottles for young children. Fill them with fake flowers, small toys, sparkly confetti, and more!
St. Patrick’s Day Sensory Bottles! Your students will love these leprechaun-infused sensory bottles. The gold one is one of my favorite sensory bottles. It is made with Biocolor Metallic paint and is so mesmerizing! Watching the shimmer swirl and move is so calming for the nervous system.
Easter Sensory Bottles! Celebrate Easter with these fun sensory bottles! They are perfectly themed for little learners and will help calm their nerves or wait in line. Students can shake and roll while they stand in line to wash their hands or wait patiently for other students to complete a task.
Weather Sensory Bottles! My students love these weather sensory bottles that I place at the science table when we do a weather study. I like that students can observe different kinds of weather in the classroom. I explain how to make each sensory bottle in the post below.
Summer Sensory Bottles! The sun is shining, and the kids are more energetic than ever! Better make these summer sensory bottles to help them calm down and remain focused for learning time.
USA Sensory Bottles! These USA sensory bottles are great for a 4th of July theme, a voting theme, a Veteran’s Day theme, or an election theme. The sparkly pipe cleaner bottle is very fun for a different kind of filler in your sensory bottles.
Fall Sensory Bottles! Create fall sensory bottles for your classroom to use all season long. They are cute, handy, and easy to make! Students will enjoy shaking them in the calm-down area to help regulate their emotions.
Halloween Sensory Bottles! Spooky sensory fun is coming your way! These Halloween sensory bottles are simple to make and won’t break the bank! If you don’t have one of the materials, add what you have, and they will turn out wonderfully! Younger and older kids will love these different ways to explore Halloween.
That is a giant sensory bottle round-up, so you don’t have to search the Internet for all your themes! These sensory bottles are simple to make, last for years, and won’t break the bank to make them for your preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten class. Kids of all ages are going to love these sensory bottles!
Get more sensory ideas for your classroom by clicking the images below. I have posts on the sensory table, play dough trays, water table sensory play ideas, and more!
Get these resources to make your sensory planning easier! An excellent way to increase fine motor skills with simple materials in the classroom.
Want more sensory bottle tips and tricks? Check out the video!
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I’m Jackie, your go-to girl for early childhood inspiration and research-based curriculum.