This easy DIY calm down sensory bottle helps children manage emotions more effectively. Its beauty mesmerizes , calming children with its abstract visual motion. The liquid movement is interesting and hypnotic. This makes it attention grabbing and a great tool for children who need help to focus, re-center and calm down.
The Galaxy calm down sensory bottle works by providing a visually appealing sensory outlet that children can get lost in and breathe with. As they shake it, it swirls fast and then slows down. This helps children slow down, as all the glitter and stars slowly start to sink. It would make a great addition to any stress relief tool kit for kids who experience anxiety, stress, temper tantrums and big emotions.
Let me show you how easy it was to make this beautiful galaxy in a bottle. I will explain how it can help children manage big emotions. Then I will give you some other strategies and activities that can be paired with the galaxy calm down sensory bottle, for effective emotional regulation with children who are experiencing BIG emotions.
DIY Galaxy calm down sensory bottle
- A Plastic bottle. I used VOSS because they are pretty solid, have a silver plastic lid and are aesthetically more appealing.
- Purple, Blue, Silver and Pink Glitter.
- Star sequins.
- Glitter glue.
- 1/2 cup of Corn Syrup.
Put Everything into your bottle and do the lid up tight. You might want to use hot glue on the inside of the lid to glue it shut. That’s it. Totally easy for anyone to make. The photo’s don’t show how hypnotic and amazing it looks.
How to use the Galaxy Calm Down Sensory Bottle.
You can utilise the Galaxy calm down sensory bottle by adding it to a calming corner. We have a “chill out” corner, some people have a quiet space. Any time your child experiences big emotions, stress, anxiety or a break down, guide them to their calm space where they can play with the sensory bottle.
Alternatively, some people use calm down sensory bottles as a time-out tool. Whenever the child needs down time to re-center and calm down, they can use the galaxy calm down sensory bottle until the glitter subsides. Here are a few more options:
To help Calm-down.
Have the Galaxy calm down sensory bottle in a quiet space with some other calming sensory outlets. Try this Velvety soft Lavender Dough. Some scented slime. Add some sensory toys. You will need to explain how the space works to begin with. Then any time you sense your child’s emotional state rising, sit with them in the quiet space and let them play with one of the calm-down tools. Eventually they will learn to take themselves to the quiet space if they need.
To help regulate emotions.
Use the Galaxy calm down sensory bottle as an emotional regulation tool. Whenever your child is feeling frustrated or angry, get them to shake the bottle. Shake it hard! Make sure they know they are allowed to feel angry and frustrated. You can do this by helping them verbalise how they feel, to the bottle. They might say to the bottle “I feel so angry because…” and then give it a good shake. Then let them know that once they let those big feelings out, they need to learn how to calm themselves down… “Like the Galaxy Bottle”! Get your child to watch closely, and breathe deeply, as the Galaxy bottle slows down, the glitter will slow down and the stars will sink. This will help them slow down.
As a Time-out Timer.
Now, a lot of people know I am not a fan of traditional time-out – You know, the old style punishment of a chair in a corner excluded from the rest of the family where I child must sit, alone, ignored, upset and not allowed to think or feel anything for how every many minutes matches their age. No. Just No!
This can be used as time-out, in the same sense as adults need time out. What do you do? Rub essential oils into your temples. Go for a brisk walk. Listen to meditation music. Hide in the pantry and eat chocolate. Take a glass of wine to the loo. No judgment here… Kids need time-out in the same way. Just a few minutes of calm. When their beaker is full and about to explode (or has exploded), ask them to sit with the Galaxy calm down sensory bottle by themselves somewhere. Away from over-stimulating loud, chaotic situations, where they can calm down in their own time. This is a great tool to teach them to take their own time out.
This makes a perfect pre-nap or pre-bed time toy. Add the calm down sensory bottle into a calming bedtime routine to help children de-stress and relax before sleep time.
In a Stress-relief tool kit.
Some kids function high on the emotional scale, whether it is typical stress, high anxiety, sensory difficulties, or internalising/externalising diagnoses. Adding the calm-down sensory bottle into a ‘stress-relief tool kit’ would benefit them across situations. By using a shoe box, or similar, you can gather some anti-stress tools and have them on hand when travelling, visiting new places or at school for instance.
Benefits of using Calm Down Sensory Bottles
Did you know emotional regulation continues to develop until early adulthood. It isn’t something that we naturally have in childhood. It can be hard! Children must experience overwhelming emotions and frustrations to first understand their emotional state, before they can adapt and learn from it.
Adults therefore need to understand that a child’s ability to regulate their emotions is only in the initial stage of development. They can benefit from help and guidance in mastering this skill. Thus, effective emotional regulation tools can only be beneficial through this stage of development.
The Galaxy Calm Down Sensory Bottle can be explained as a visual anchor, that brings a child’s focus on to ONE thing. This is helpful when they may feel they’re in an overwhelming, chaotic world with a lot of things out of their control. By shaking the bottle, this provides a calming proprioceptive input and is also a physical outlet (less destructive than aggression towards others, self or things).
As children watch the glitter slow down and sink, their hands and eyes are brought to midline, which can help re-center the nervous system. And the slow fall of the sinking star sequins is a visual model that can often slow her heart rate and breathing.
Awesome things to add to your Galaxy Sensory Bottle
Read more emotional regulation tips here
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