Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Frozen themed sensory bottles

My 4 year old daughter is still obsessed with the movie Frozen, so most of our activities have featured elements of the movie and it's characters. Following a theme or something that your child is really interested in helps them become involved and excited to learn. 
For a great sensory experience we decided to make some Frozen themed sensory bottles. With some water, glitter and food colouring we created a glittery snowstorm. Some children may find the bottles  relaxing as they watch the glitter travel down the bottle (once shaken) and I have heard that they can be therapeutic and used in situations when your child needs to find a way to calm down.

Due to Bee's upcoming birthday, that obviously had a Frozen theme, we decided to make extra sensory bottles to give out as favors, for the babies that were attending.  

Who can play?
Children of all ages will love the sensory bottles... Even grown ups.

Like with all activities adult supervision is recommended at all times.
Ensure that the lid on the bottle is securely attached, to prevent children drinking the contents or spilling it. The liquid can also stain fabric.
I recommend that an adult uses the glue gun as it can burn skin and damage work surfaces etc. 

What do you need?
Clean plastic bottles
Food colouring
Glitter glue and glitter

You can make the sensory bottles with just the items mentioned above, or if you wanted to make them extra special you will need:

Glue gun

What did we do?
Firstly we placed a jug of water on a tray (to catch any water that could possibly spill)  Bee then carefully dropped some blue food colouring into the water. She commented on how it looked "swirly". Using a spoon she stirred the liquid to ensure the food colouring was fully mixed in. 
We talked about how the clear water had changed colour.
Once Bee was happy with the mixture, she poured it carefully and slowly into the bottle, showing a lot of concentration and hand eye coordination.
Next was the fun part... Adding the glitter. We chose glitter glue and regular glitter. Bee's theory was the more the merrier! 
She showed a lot of physical development as she shook the glitter tub carefully in the bottle and would squeeze the glitter glue dispenser. We loved watching the glitter glue slowly fall to the bottom of the bottle like a snake. Then we had to give it a really good shake to mix it in.
Our next job was to screw on the bottle lid and ensure that it would stay there by wrapping tape around the lid and neck of the bottle. 
You can either stop here or go ahead and make them look extra special. To do this I cut a circular shape out of felt, that was just big enough to go around the bottle top and neck of the bottle.
Using a hot glue gun I attached the felt to the bottle and the cap. Bee could not participate at this point due to a high risk of burns. She watched from a distance and we talked about being safe. I showed her how the glue sticks melt and come out as liquid from the other side of the glue gun.
All that was left to do was tie a piece of blue ribbon around the neck if the bottle. Bee loved shaking the bottles and watching the glitter fall. For me, I found it quite therapeutic and relaxing. 
The end result looked really cute and I cannot wait to hand them out at the party.
What did we learn?
  • Communication and language- Listening to and following instructions
  • Physical development- Fine and large manipulative skills and coordination when filling the bottles and shaking them.
  • Personal, social and emotional- Making relationships, making a gift for others, social skills, fun and enjoyment. Developing sensory skills and relaxation.
  • Mathematics- Measuring out the water, food colouring and glitter. Learning about capacity concepts.
  • Understanding of the world- Change of state and talking about weather conditions such as snow and ice.
  • Expressive arts and design-designing and making your own sensory bottle 

What could be done next?
1. Experiment with different colours of glitter and food colouring. 
2. Change the items in the bottles, for example add Pom poms or rice etc. This will extend sensory development and can also be used for musical instruments.
3. Use as a relaxation bottle for challenging moments

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