I’m always looking for new stimulating experiences for my 14-month-old daughter, so I knew she would love this DIY rainbow search and find sensory jar. She can roll it and shake it, revealing new items as she does. It is exciting and different each time she plays with it.
Make an I-Spy Sensory Jar for Toddlers
I filled the jar with colored rice, which you can easily make by following the directions here.
You will need the following items to make the rainbow search and find sensory jar:
- A clear plastic jar with a lid
- Uncooked rice (enough to fill the jar)
- Food coloring
- Small items of interest (beads, buttons, toys, stickers, etc.)
- Hot glue gun
How to Make the Sensory Jar
First, I filled the empty jar with uncooked rice to determine how much I would need. In order to make it more colorful, I wanted to make more than one color of rice, so I split it into three parts and then followed the colored rice directions here to color it.
While the rice was drying I got the other items I wanted to put in the jar ready. I collected buttons, foam shapes, and stickers. To give the stickers some rigidity, I placed them on cardboard and then cut out the shapes. Using stickers is a great way to fill the jar with characters or pictures that your child is interested and familiar with.
Once the rainbow rice was dry, I began to fill the jar by first layering rice, then the items, then more rice, etc. I found that if I filled the rice to the very top, there would not be enough room for the things inside to move, so you will have to experiment with the amount of rice in the jar, being sure that the items and the rice inside actually move.
Once you are happy with the jar, seal the top by gluing it shut with hot glue. Be sure to check the jar on occasion to check that it is still well sealed, and always supervise your child when they are using the rainbow search and find jar.
How Toddlers Play with the I-Spy Sensory Jar
My daughter loves rolling the jar back and forth to see the rice move away from the items inside. She also enjoys finding what is inside as she drops it, tips it and twists it around. I love that it is easy to make and customizable to meet your child’s interests.
Sarah Benton Feitlinger, M.Ed. is a former Preschool-6th science teacher, mom, blogger and science curriculum developer. She is passionate about educating children, and loves anything and everything science! Check out her blog, Share it! Science for fun science activities, lessons, science news, book and learning product reviews and other resources for kids, teachers, homeschoolers and parents.