It’s no secret that kids are full of energy and sometimes make lots of noise. At times, they have strong emotions that are hard for them to express in words.
When kids get over-excited or rowdy, it’s great to have some ways to help them settle down.
One fun and creative option is to make a super-easy glitter calm jar. Make them as a quiet activity, then use them like an egg timer so kids know how long they have to finish tasks such as cleaning their room.
They’re nice to hold, which is great for kids who need a tactile stimulus while they’re concentrating on other activities such as reading or listening.
Watching the swirling clouds of glitter slowly sink to the bottom is soothing, helping to settle anxious or restless little ones.
It’s a fun way to spend time together and make something pretty and useful.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- A plastic bottle – about 500mls is great, but you can make them any size you want
- Glitter – in a variety of sizes and colours, or choose a single colour theme
- Food colouring – to colour the water
- Glycerine – this slows the movement of the glitter through the water
- Washing liquid – helps to stop the glitter from clumping
Here’s how to make it:
- Prepare enough warm (not hot) water to almost fill the bottle, but don’t pour it in yet (Note: hot water will warp your bottle, so make sure it’s just lukewarm)
- Choose your glitter and add it into the bottle. Start with small pinches of glitter, as too much can clump together and stick to the top of the bottle. Start with three to five glitter types – pick about two fine varieties and one or two chunkier ones.
- Add a small amount of water and gently shake and swirl the bottle to help prevent the glitter from clumping.
- Add glycerine until the bottle is about one-quarter full. (Tip: if you’re making a few bottles, you can use different amounts of glycerine in each one. This creates bottles with different rates of glitter settling.)
- Add the warm water until the bottle is almost full. Allow some space at the top in case you want to add more glycerine and so you can stir the jar later.
- Add two to three drops of the washing liquid. This helps to disperse the glitter, but too much can make your mixture bubbly.
- Close the bottle and rotate it a few times to mix everything together. Then gently shake it and have a look at the consistency.
- Carefully take off the lid. You’ll notice that some glitter is stuck to the top, but don’t worry.
- Pop a finger in the top and swirl everything around. Wipe your finger on the inside edge of the bottle regularly to remove glitter back into the bottle. (Tip: you can use a utensil for this, but fingers work better because the natural skin oils help to separate the glitter).
- Add your chosen food colouring. You can also pop in some small, lightweight toys. You might like to have a theme, such as farm animals, sea creatures, flowers or dinosaurs.
- When you’re happy with your combination, add more warm water or glycerine if needed. Use super glue on the lid to seal your bottle, then set it aside to dry according to the glue manufacturer’s instructions.
- Now you have a unique sparkly calm jar!
Calm jars are perfect for a rainy day, or anytime you need an activity to create some calm in your day.
Why not make several with different colours or themes?