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Simple Entertainment: Sensory Bottles

Don’t forget simple when you try to entertain a baby! Learn how to make simple baby sensory bottles that easily engage your child and allow them to play with water without making a mess. Find more baby play ideas and taste safe toddler activities.

water bottle filled with glitter

Emma got some cool toys from friends when she was a baby. Her favorite toy, however, was either the shampoo bottle (she liked to watch the bubbles rise), or a water bottle I added a couple beads and sponge pieces to to create a DIY baby sensory play toy.

How to Make Water Bottle Sensory Toys

This toy is a similar idea: take a clear plastic container, and add water and glitter. It fascinates Lily, Emma, Johnny, and their friends.

rolling water bottle filled with glitter

And it’s not just for babies! The older kids especially like to roll it across the floor and watch the glitter spin as the container turns.

We’ve had this toy for nearly a year now and nobody has tried opening it, but you may want to add some superglue if you have more investigation-minded children – remember, our very similar bean toy lasted four years before some friends realized the cap came off!

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a book full of baby play ideas that will help you enjoy parenting a baby and bond with your baby.

More Simple Sensory Bottles

There are all sorts of variations you can make of this toy! Here are a few we have tried:

  • Oil and water with food coloring. Makes a lava lamp type sensory bottle.
  • Water with squinkies
  • Water with shaped foil confetti
  • Water with glycerin added to make the solution thicker, followed by heavier items (little erasers work well, and so do these little jewels)
  • Pom poms and no liquid
  • Rice and small toys – this doubles as an I Spy toy if you make a list of items for the child to find.

The great thing with most of these combinations is that you can re-use the items for play or crafts once your child tires of this sensory toy. It can also be a fun way for a younger child to safely interact with a toy that would otherwise be a choking hazard.

Do you have a favorite sensory bottle filler that we should check out? How about a fun DIY toy that my kids would enjoy?

Buy a Baby Sensory Toy

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If you’re shopping for a baby gift, try this sensory play mat:

As with the DIY sensory bottles, this play mat allows babies to play with water without actually making a mess. The mat also promotes tummy time for babies. And once they get a little older, they can try out no-mess finger painting!

How to make sensory bottles

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MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.

10 thoughts on “Simple Entertainment: Sensory Bottles”

  1. I am always amazed how fascinating colored water with glitter can be. After all, lava lamps for adults sort of work on the same principle :)
    .-= Natalie´s last blog ..Families of Australia =-.

  2. Elisa | blissfulE

    Great non-messy glitter idea! I can see this being extremely fascinating. You’re so clever!
    .-= Elisa | blissfulE´s last blog ..kiddo quotes =-.

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