Search Bottle

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Still have all these goodies from your gel pack?!  Or do you have a bunch of small objects that need a home?  Then let’s make a search bottle!

What is a search bottle, you ask?  It’s a fabulous FOCUS tool, for keeping eyes, hands, and minds busy!  The search bottle is filled with small objects that appear when you rotate and shake the bottle.  For kiddos and teens that get easily anxious, overwhelmed, even bored, it gives them something to keep them occupied and can take their mind off of what is bothering them.  You can make a list of all of the objects and attach to the bottle, giving a specific task to complete. Challenging them to find all of the item on the list can extend the life of the activity!  Sounds good, and you have a pile of small objects hanging around?  Then you are ready!

Materials needed:

  • small objects such as pompoms, googly eyes, beads, jewels, small figures, dice, buttons, and anything else you can find
  • leftover bottle, clean and dry
  • filler, such as rice, beans, craft pellets
  • Optional — super glue to seal the bottle tight


Lay out and count your objects.  This may be the best time to make your list so you are sure to keep track of all of the objects you plan to include.


Pour a few items into the bottle, then add some filler.  Continue until you had added all objects and the bottle is filled with at least a 2 inch gap at the top, to allow items to move freely.  A funnel can help with filling, but not totally necessary.  For my search bottle, I used the craft pellets that I use when I make weighted blankets.  I chose this material because I had it and thought it would look pretty, but if you have rice or beans at home right now, they will do the trick!

Tada!  Attach your list and glue on your lid and your search bottle is good to go!  Great as a coping tool, busy tool, or activity to do while waiting 🙂

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