Fun with Kids

sensory bottle

Calming the kids with a sensory bottle!

Sensory bottles are often referred to as ‘calm down’ bottles. They’re a great activity to do with the kids when it’s time to slow things down a bit.

When a sensory bottle has items such as glitter, beads and sand in it that move slowly, children (and even adults!) are often mesmerised by watching their slow descent calming their breathing and regulating their emotions.

Here’s one with a pirate theme, but you can choose any theme you like.

Pirate ‘sunken treasure’ sensory bottle

You will need

  • Craft sand
  • Colourful beads, tiny craft shells, sequins and glitter
  • Blue food colouring (optional)
  • Clea, empty plastic or glass bottles with lids (smooth-sided ones are most effective)
  • Tape or glue gun to secure the lid
  • A funnel - to make it easier to add items to the bottle
  1. Put the ‘treasure’ in the bottle. Choose from the beads, sequins and shells – or use all of them! (This part is great for developing fine motor skills).
  2. Then add the glitter – it’s best to use a funnel
  3. Finally, add water almost to the top, but leave a bit of space. You can add some blue food colouring as well to make the water more sea-like.
  4. Once you’re happy with your pirate bottle put on the lid and close it up. You can tape the lid closed or secure it with a glue gun.

You can also make your bottle ‘slow motion’ by using 1-part clear hair gel to 6-parts warm water. Let it cool completely before adding your bits and pieces.