We started by making this in an upcycled plastic bottle that had contained a tea drink, but found that a taller bottle was better because it gave the grains more time to fall and sound like rain, so we used a Glaceau SmartWater bottle.
I removed the label from the bottle once it was empty and removed the stickiness with Goo Gone, following the directions on the Goo Gone bottle.
Next L&L dropped wooden toothpicks into the bottle. We stuck in a few long wooden skewers as diagonally as possible to keep the toothpicks from all ending up vertical in the bottle. I’m not sure if this really helped, but it didn’t hurt. We filled the bottle with toothpicks until they nearly reached the top.
Then we used a funnel to add the smallest uncooked grains we could find in our pantry. We attempted this with rice first as I’d seen some rain sticks made with rice previously, and then even with wheat grains, but all of those were too large to flow freely enough to make much of a “rain” sound. Yes, this meant dumping our bottle out and refilling it with toothpicks twice, so I am telling you the insider’s way to do it so you don’t make my mistakes!!
We found that tiny grains worked best in our rain stick sensory bottle, so we added a little bit of quinoa and a lot of amaranth. If you don’t already have these, you can probably find them in your local health food store’s bulk bins so you can buy just the small portion you need. Ours came from Whole Foods.
Once you have your bottle perfected — I’d wait a day or two to make sure you’ve got everything right — glue the lid on and let your kids have fun making rain sounds to their heart’s content! 🙂
Here’s our bottle at rest:
Though it’s a shame you can’t hear it, here’s our bottle in action:
Have you made a rain stick sensory bottle for your kids yet?
What are you waiting for?!?
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