Do you have children who are enamored with all things creepy crawly? These easy spider sensory bottle ideas are sure to pique their interest. I think they’d be great during a bug or spider theme, as part of your Halloween activities for preschoolers, or just because your little scientists want to.
I have to admit, I’m not a huge fan of spiders. Okay, that is a bit of an understatement (just ask my son). But so often children are super interested in them, so I have to bypass my thoughts on arachnids. These sensory bottles work very well for me, as they don’t look enough like real spiders to bother me. Which means little ones who don’t care for spiders are likely to be just fine with them, too.
SIMPLE SPIDER SENSORY BOTTLE IDEAS
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What to make the sensory bottles
Start out with some empty, clean bottles. They can be glass or plastic, depending on the kids who’ll be using the discovery bottles. For these, we ended up using clean Argo tea bottles that we had on-hand. I know many people who love using empty Voss plastic water bottles. My only suggestion would be to make sure it’s a wider-mouth bottle. That will make it easier to add the spiders.
To make the liquid spider bottles, fill the bottle about 3/4 full of light corn syrup. Then add warm/hot water to the jar, leaving some room to add the spider rings. Put the top on and shake the bottle to combine the corn syrup and water (you could also do this in a measuring cup if that’s easier for you). Once the liquids are combined, add the spider rings. For the liquid jar, I add rings that I’d snipped the ring part off of. I just liked how they flowed without that part. I’m sure it would be just fine to leave the rings intact, too. Experiment with different amounts of corn syrup and water to determine what “flow” you like best in the bottle.
The dry, heavier bottles will require the beans and more spider rings. For this bottle, we left the ring part on the spiders. It was just a matter of pouring the beans into the bottle, and then adding the spider rings. I liked having both the white and black bottles out for contrast. I’m sure including black spider rings with the white beans would look wonderful, too.
I’d suggest hot gluing the top of the wet spider bottle to prevent little hands opening and spilling the contents.
how to use these spider sensory bottle ideas
Making the spider sensory bottles can be done with or without kiddos, of course. Personally, I think it’s more fun to involve the children, especially with simple sensory bottle ideas like these. The kids’ senses can be incorporated in the process, with questions like, “What does this feel like?” “What sound do you hear right now?” Measuring and number recognition is also easily incorporated while creating these jars.
Once the bottles are made, they can be placed out for observation and exploration. Children can look at them, move them back and forth, shake them, hold them up to the light, etc. Add some paper or science journals next to the bottles so kids can draw pictures and/or write about what they see, touch, and hear.
Incorporate fine motor skills with sensory play by allowing kids to open and pour the bean bottles. Place a tray nearby, along with kid-friendly tongs or tweezers. They can pour the contents out into the tray, and then use the tweezers to pick out the spider rings. Add some number cards and challenge the children to pick up that many spiders off the tray.
Would your kids get a kick out of these easy spider sensory bottle ideas?
SPIDER LESSON PLANS
Looking for more spider ideas? Check out these spider lesson plans for preschool. A week’s worth of activities that touch on literacy, science, math, etc. Plus a book list and printables to use right away.