Nothing is more relaxing than watching pretty beads rise and fall in a sensory bottle. This fun rainbow version is fun for kids of all ages, and will provide a calming vibe and works well as a timer, sensory activity, calming tool, or as a learning tool.
There are tons of ways you can play and learn with this rainbow sensory bottle. Add in a few colors for a themed bottle or the whole rainbow of color for a riot of color!
What you need to make the rainbow sensory bottle:
- 1-liter soda bottle (Voss water bottles are also popular)
- Rainbow beads (we used clear rainbow beads)
- Clear corn syrup
- Hot glue gun and glue sticks (you can also use a more permanent form of glue if your kids are likely to break the seal on hot glue)
The key to this sensory bottle is to put in more corn syrup than water. The beads float on the top of the water when more corn syrup is in the bottle The beads are trapped inside, which will make them rise to the top slowly. We found a ratio of about 50 percent water and 50 percent corn syrup was ideal.
This sensory bottle is like a reverse calm-down bottle because instead of slowly sinking, the beads in the water slowly rise to the top. Experiment with adding more or less corn syrup to create the consistency that your kids love best.
Remove any labels from your bottle. You can soak the bottle in vegetable oil to remove the sticky strip where the label was glued to the bottle. It typically takes about an hour to remove the label after soaking it in vegetable oil. Wash with soap.
Warm the water slightly and fill the bottle half way with water.
Fill the rest of the bottle with corn syrup.
Drop the rainbow beads into the bottle until you have a layer about 2 inches thick. You can do more or fewer beads, but we liked the look of a 2-inch layer.
Place a few drops of glue onto the lid, and screw it onto the bottle tightly.
Shake the bottle and turn it from side to side to get the beads to move around. Time how long it takes for them to reach the top.
Shine a flashlight on the beads and see if you can project a rainbow onto a wall!