Sensory bottles for babies

Today we made beach sensory bottles for our baby class and one mum asked ‘What can I do with it with my baby?’

Firstly you can put ANYTHING in a sensory bottle! You can make different sizes and shape bottles with lots of different content but for babies, I wouldn’t make them too heavy initially so that those small hands can lift, explore and shake easily. Here is a list from my current collection but have a look HERE for loads of ideas! 

  • Lego
  • Tin foil
  • Rice (colour using food colouring)
  • Beads
  • Bells
  • Pasta – use different shapes
  • Pompoms
  • Hama beads
  • Washing up liquid in water

Sensory bottles are an easy, non-messy and safe way to have sensory play. They are also cheap to make and a great way of recycling used bottles – just remember to glue the lids on and supervise during play. Sensory play is a hands on way of your baby exploring the world around them and therefore making important brain connections.

Once you have made one or two, here’s what you can do with it.

  • Use it during tummy time – roll it in front of their eyes to encourage eye tracking and, later, reaching out.
  • As a shaker – any dry contents will make a great sound when you shake them. Add some music and you have a home made music session!
  • Roll and chase – great for crawlers to encourage them to crawl after it!
  • Play hide and seek with items – use the sand to cover the items inside and then try and get the baby to find them. Those who have a sense of object permanence will, younger babies will not.
  • Just let them explore – they will spend ages trying to make sense of the contents of a bottle and figuring out if some things are bigger than others or, if you have multiple bottles, which make what sounds and how heavy they are.
  • Let them mouth them! Mouthing is perfectly natural for babies. They use their mouths to discover in the same way as they use their hands. Just make sure that your bottle is safe and the lid is firmly glued on.
  • Take it out and about! Lightweight and easy to pop in a changing bag, a sensory bottle makes an easy toy to take out and about. Easy to clean too, it doesn’t matter if it gets covered in lunch or dropped in a puddle! Why not have a different bottle for each day of the week.

Comment below with any other ideas that you may have!