I-Spy Bottle

Tags: home made toys, exploratory play

Section: Exploratory Objects

I-Spy bottles are a brilliant alternative to the traditional games of I spy for younger children on long journeys or just for fun!

I have seen lots of these I-Spy bottles around at the moment and decided to make our own one for a recent car journey. Ava absolutely loved it and it kept her busy for a long time as she searched for the different objects.

What you need:

  • an empty bottle - Oasis bottles are good as the tops are slightly wider which is handy for putting the objects in
  • coloured Rice
  • a variety of small objects; we used:
    • a barbie's shoe
    • a magnetic letter A
    • pirate eraser
    • sparkly gem
    • Hello Kitty Charm

Put the rice into the bottle then add the objects. Give it all a shake together and it's ready to be explored!


  • a letter or number I spy bottle- use a variety of letters or numbers for your child to find
  • use different fillers instead or rice:
    • coloured salt
    • sand
    • lentils
    • seeds
    • baby pasta
  • you could add a photo of the objects as a tag on the bottle, so the children know what they're looking for.
  • different themed bottles
  • animals
  • Christmas
  • different seasons
  • colour themed

How can this help your child's development?

These I spy bottles help children develop their observation skills as they search for the small objects in the bottle. It can encourage language skills as they describe what they can see and the position of it within the bottle (next to, in front of, behind etc..). It is good for children's natural curiosity to explore and discover.

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