I'm always on the lookout for quick things to surprise and delight. When I worked in early childhood education we had sensory tubes from a well known educational company. But to be honest, the kids would lose interest in them very quickly. The solution? Homemade sensory jars! And you most likely already have the materials you need right in your art closet.
We need to patch Lucy's left eye for an hour a day (it used to be two hours) so I am always looking for activities to keep her occupied during patching time. Her right eye has very limited vision so patching is hard work for everyone, especially Lucy. She was having a tough time today (to learn more about her retinoblastoma journey, follow along with her hashtag #lucythewarrior on instagram) so as I was holding her I put together a pom pom jar. Lucy loves pom pom play so it was the perfect solution to cheer her up quickly and easily. She loved it. The colorful blobs floating in the tube immediately attracted her attention and were vibrant enough for her to notice them quickly.
All you need is a clear bottle, water, and pom poms. Any plastic bottle will do but I used a voss bottle. It's the perfect size, shape, and the label is super easy to remove. First fill the bottle about 1/2 or 3/4 of the way full of pom poms, then fill with water. Replace the cap (glue it if you think your child will open it) and voila, you have a surprise sensory activity in less than a minute!
I didn't glue ours and emptied it after playtime was over. The pompoms dried nicely and we can reuse the jar when we are ready for a new experience (like the glitter jars featured here)!
We love these super bright, super soft pom poms that are available on amazon! Lucy especially loves the tiny ones that are mixed in for sorting and color matching games!
Sometimes, just for fun, I throw some glitter in with the pom poms for some extra pizazz. Any glitter will do, but I especially love this VERY sparkly silver glitter I found on amazon (and more importantly, Lucy does too!).
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