Plastic Bottle Collage

I got this idea to do this activity last year with the children I was teaching – ages 4 & 5. As you will find out soon I am somewhat of a pack rat. I like to save/collect things because you never know when you might need it. I had some leftover scraps of colored construction paper, pom poms, beads, and brightly colored straws. I also had some water bottles and small juice bottles that I saved that still had their caps. I had taken the paper off the bottles and to remove the ink from the top I used nail polish remover. It works great and I have clean caps.

When you usually make a collage you gather a variety of material and glue it on to construction paper/cardboard/paperplate. I decided to let the children put the materials in a clear plastic bottle. They could put in as much as they wanted to. When they were done we put the lid on it and they had a bright collage bottle.

Materials for Bottle Collage

Materials for Bottle Collage

I came across some leftover scraps of paper, straws, pom poms, and beads. I also had some clear plastic juice bottles that were ready to be used. I brought the materials over to my grandchildren’s house and let them have at it. I provided the materials and let them use it as they want. The scraps of paper were in strips so I showed them how to roll it so they can put it in the bottle.

H, K, and C making their collage bottles.

H, K, and C making their collage bottles.

They had a great time making their collage bottle. Their ages are 2 1/2, 4 1/2, and 6 years old. We didn’t glue the caps on, in case they wanted to change it or add more to it. If you want to make it more permanent hot glue the lid on.

Finished Collage Bottles

Finished Collage Bottles

Great Sensory Ideas for Preschoolers

When you hear the word sensory what does it mean to you?  Does it make you think of touch, taste, smell, sound, and sight?

Sensory play is an important part of early childhood.  It provides many learning opportunities for children. Through sensory play children learn to problem solve, and it promotes brain development. Benefits of sensory play are self-expression, self-esteem, social, investigation skills, pre-math concepts and its physical.

Many preschools have sensory tables but what I like to use are inexpensive dishpans/tubs that I purchased at the Dollar Tree or WalMart.  With the dish pans you can still have 2 or 3 children together at one tub or they can do it individually.

Sensory tub with sand.

Sensory tub with sand.

Sensory tubs are great calming activities for most children.  Be creative in what you put in the tubs.  I personally do not like using food in the tubs (ex. rice, beans, oatmeal, because many of the children we come in contact with do not get very much to eat and what they are playing with could be potential food for them).

Things I do like to put in the sensory tubs are:

Water (plain, colored, soapy)

Snow (if you live in a climate where you can get some clean snow)

Ice

Shredded paper

Salt

Feathers

Sand

Coffee Sand

Bird Seed (do not use with children who have nut allergies)

Cotton balls

Easter grass

Things found in nature

Mud

Clean Mud

Props that would be useful with sensory tubs:

Tongs, spoons, funnels, small washcloths, small toys/objects for playing/hiding/washing, plastic Easter eggs, cups, pipettes, and turkey basters.

What is your favorite thing to put in a sensory tub?  Please share with us your favorites.