Today we made a calming jar especially for those occasions when your child or even ‘you’ are feeling a bit stressed or upset and need to take a few minutes to calm down. You just shake it up and watch as the glitter swirls around and falls gently to the bottom.
If my girls get upset or have an outburst I’ve been teaching them to take a few deep breaths and I count with them and by the time I get to 5 they have generally calmed down at least enough to tell me what the problem is so this really is another way of doing that but so much prettier.
It’s really simple to make, all you need is
- A screw top jar
1-2 tablespoons of glitter glue
3-4 teaspoons of glitter
Fairly warm water
Optional Extra: A drop of food colouring
Just fill the jar with the hot water leaving a small gap at the top for shaking room. (If using a plastic jar be careful the water isn’t so hot that it warps the jar)
Add the glitter glue and stir, stir, stir. The hot water will break up the glue and this is what will make the glitter move slower.
Add the glitter and screw on the lid tight! Do not use a jar with a push on lid – I tried that the first time and it fell off mid shake even with my hands over it….I really needed to use the calming jar at that point!
This is my first one ………
Then I added a drop of food colouring and swapped the jar!
The food colouring makes it really vibrant and I think the blue is really quite calming.
The amounts of glitter/glue you will need will vary depending on the size of the jar just don’t put too much glitter glue in or it will be too slow-moving and if you do then maybe add some bigger sized glitter that will fall quicker. I used very fine glitter and it takes a good few minutes to settle. Either way you can add more of each until it looks about right.
Some people use these as a Time Out aid so when the glitter has settled the child can join back in. I would probably avoid giving the jar to a tantruming toddler who may throw it; a plastic jar maybe safer for younger children. You could also use it for anxiety to take their mind off a problem for a moment or these can be used for adults if they are seriously stressed out and need to calm their thoughts.
These are great fun to make and brought up a discussion on feelings and why its good to take a few minutes to collect our thoughts. The funny thing was after we made it, I then had a particularly stressful couple hours dealing with work on my day off and my eldest who is 4 just said to me ‘mummy I think you need calming down’ and handed me the jar 🙂