It’s no secret that babies and toddlers love to touch things. After all, this is how they learn about the world around them. That’s why I love doing sensory activities with my kids; but the best part about them is that you don’t need fancy toys or expensive supplies. You can create sensory activities with things you have already in our home!
We love making rice sensory bottles because they provide so much fun and you can get really creative with them. These sensory bottles are safe for babies and you can adapt them for a toddler or an older child that wants to explore even more.
All you will need for this rice sensory bottle is well, rice, and something else to mix in with the rice. We use pompoms but you can use any other little toys or craft supplies you have in your home. You can even mix different things and make it sparkle by adding glitter.
If you’re doing this activity for a baby, follow the instructions and make you sure you close the bottle tightly. You can even use a glue gun on the cap to make sure the baby doesn’t accidentally open the bottle and eat the rice.
If you’re doing this activity with a toddler or older kid, start with the rice sensory bottle and once they are done playing with it, open it and let them play with the contents in a bucket. Scroll down to the directions to see how they can play with this.
Sensory bottles are so much fun for the little ones. I’ve even made a version of this for my 4 year old with rice and tiny toys, like the little erasers you find at the dollar section in Target or tiny gems. We use this one for playing “I spy” so it’s a great bottle to keep in the car or when you need them entertained for a longer time.
You can even include the older kiddos and ask them to make these bottle – so it’s fun for anyone in your family. The possibilities are endless with this simple sensory toy!
Rice Sensory Bottle
- Voss Water Bottle (I use the 500ml for baby and the 850ml for toddler) or you can use any empty bottle you have at home
- 1 cup of organic rice
- Pompoms (you can also use any tiny toys/items you have in your home)
- Funnel or paper to use as funnel
- Glue gun (optional)
- Fine motor tool set (optional for toddler/kid sensory play)
Roll the paper into a cone shape to use as a funnel. If you have a funnel just use that instead.
Pour the rice and pom poms into the bottle in layers.
Don’t fill the bottle to the top so the kids can shake it to discover what’s inside. You’ll want it about 2/3 full.
Screw the lid onto the bottle. To prevent your child from opening the bottle you can use hot glue around the rim of the bottle before screwing the lid on.
If you need to remove the lid after glueing on, just run hot water over the lid to loosen the seal and take the lid off.
Encourage your child to discover the pompoms (or whatever else you added to the bottle) hidden in the rice by turning and shaking the bottle.
Once your child is done playing with the rice bottle, the contents can be poured into a plastic tub to be used as a sensory bin. I don’t recommend this for babies since they can eat the rice and pompoms but it’s very fun for a toddler (you’ll still want to keep a close eye so they don’t eat any of it).
You can make it fun by giving your child a spoon and plastic bowl to scoop the rice and pompoms. We also have a set of this fine motor tool set for sensory play.
That’s it! A simple and affordable sensory toy.
Tip: You can make several bottles at once with rice and different little toys/craft supplies. That way you can glue shut some of the bottles and leave others that your kids can open and play with in the sensory bin. Remember the possibilities are endless so use what you have at home!