Skip to Content

Creative and Educational Science Discovery Bottles

Save this idea for later!

We love hands-on STEM activities for kids, but sometimes you need a quick science experiment for kids that is mess-free. When this is the case, we love using science discovery bottles to quickly learn about a concept with less mess.

You can re-use most of these over and over again and keep them in your science center for self-directed learning. There is a surprising number of things you can learn about with a discovery bottle, from weather to color mixing!

Try these fun bottles in your classroom or home today! After trying these ideas, use your imagination to create discovery bottles for all kinds of science themes! Try placing a plastic skeleton in a bottle when learning the names of bones, or try growing a water plant in a bottle to observe the growth of water plants up close! You could even make an ant farm discovery bottle with live ants. It’s the perfect addition to your spring STEM activities!

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

How to Make a Discovery Bottle

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. 
spring stem challenges
You don’t have to follow the same formula to make your science discovery bottles, but we like to use plastic bottles with screw-on lids. Gluing the lids closed will help prevent unwanted spills and make the bottles reusable. We usually use Smart Water bottles for our discovery bottles, but another popular option is VOSS water bottles, or you can even find little plastic craft storage bottles that work great for this. Glass bottles will also work well for older kids, which provides greater visibility for some projects.

The shelf life for most discovery bottles is between one and six months, depending on what they are made of. Using distilled water will prolong the life of your bottles, but eventually, the materials will break down in your discovery bottles, particularly if you are using natural materials like wood or flowers in your bottles. Bottles with natural materials may have a shelf life of only a few days.

 

If you want your materials to be suspended in the container, a thicker liquid, like clear glue or corn syrup (and even clear hair gel!) can be used to keep materials suspended in the jar longer. Baby oil is also the preferred oil for jars using oil, as it is easier to see through than vegetable oil.

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Creative and Educational Science Discovery Bottles

Try these creative ideas for science discovery bottles for quick science lessons in your classroom!

 

Everyday Science Discovery Bottles

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Magnetic Discovery Bottle from Schooling a Monkey

Scented Discovery Bottles from Pre-K Pages

Magnetic Powder  Discovery Bottle from Left Brain Craft Brain

Magnetic Wand Discovery Bottle from Preschool Inspirations

Galaxy Discovery Bottle from Kids Activities Blog

Sink or Float Discovery Bottle from Little Bins for Little Hands

Lava Lamp Discovery Bottle from Little Bins for Little Hands

Robot Discovery Bottle from Fun a Day

 

Animal Discovery Bottles

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Turtle Discovery Bottle from Sunny Day Family

Diving Fish Discovery Bottle from Schooling a Monkey

Fossil Discovery Bottle from Little Bins for Little Hands

Jellyfish Discovery Bottle from Schooling a Monkey

Specimen Discovery Bottles from Little Bins for Little Hands

 

Color Mixing Discovery Bottles

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Color Changing Bottles from Preschool Inspirations

Color Mixing Discovery Bottle from Play Trains

Marble Color Mixing Discovery Bottle from Still Playing School

Rainbow Discovery Bottle from Preschool Inspirations

 

Light Discovery Bottles

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Light Discovery Bottle from Left Brain Craft Brain

Night and Day Discovery Bottles from Two Daloo

Glowing Discovery Bottle from Play Trains

Weather Science Discovery Bottles

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Weather Discovery Bottles from Two-Daloo

Water Cycle Discovery Bottle from Little Bins for Little Hands

Hurricane in a Jar from One Time Through

Ecosystem Discovery Bottles from Parenting Chaos

Tornado Discovery Bottle from Familylicious

 

Water Science Discovery Bottles

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Oceans Discovery Bottle from Happy Hooligans

Absorption Discovery Bottles from Lemon Lime Adventures

Viscosity Discovery Bottles from Lemon Lime Adventures

Oceans Discovery Bottles from Little Bins for Little Hands

 

 

Nature Discovery Bottles

Science lessons don't have to be complicated! These simple science discovery bottles make it easy to learn about science in a hands-on, mess-free way!

Fresh Flower Discovery Bottle from Little Bins for Little Hands

Nature Discovery Bottles from Little Bins for Little Hands

Desert Flower Discovery Bottle from Preschool Inspirations

Pine Needle Discovery Bottle from Teach Preschool

Layers of the Earth Discovery Bottle from One Time Through

Fall Leaf Discovery Bottle from Kids Play Box

Growing a Plant in a Jar from Violet Paper Wings

More Science Activities to Try

These classic science fair projects are perfect for kids in elementary school! Find everything from moldy bread to a potato battery and more!

Classic Science Experiments

What is more fun than candy? If your kids love candy, inspire them with these Candy Science Fair Project Ideas! They will be the star of the fair!Candy Science Experiments

Have an active kid? If you have a child with ADHD, standard science fair projects might be boring. But these ADHD science fair projects are full of action!Active Science Experiments

Save this idea for later!