Monday, May 6, 2013

Fun with Bubbles

You can tell that spring is here in Michigan.  Last week I showed you Chalk Play and this week I have Fun with Bubbles.  Bubbles are a lot of fun to play with outside, but you may be wondering about the early literacy connection.

Blowing bubbles works on your child's motor skills (both fine and gross).  Whether your child blows the bubbles from a wand or uses a bubble gun, they are exercising the muscles in their hand.  Eventually, those muscles will be strong enough for your child to write and for them to have control over their pencil or crayon.

If you are playing bubbles with your child, you are modeling new vocabulary and ideas for them.  As a child's vocabulary increases, they are better prepared to read and write.  Talk about what you see and are doing.  Are you blowing one bubble at a time or many bubbles at a time?  Are the bubbles small or large?  Who can pop the bubble?  Can we pop all of the bubbles?  Where do the bubbles go when they fly over the fence?  One of my favorite ways to talk about the bubbles is to talk about how many we blow with a bubble gun.  You get the best answers from 3 and 4 year olds, which also work on their early math skills.  I can ask, "How many bubbles do you think there are?"  Then I tend to get random answers, such as "67" or "100".  What is interesting is that they know that there are a lot of bubbles so they pull out the largest numbers that they know.

Bubbles are not just an outside toy.  We end all of our baby story times with bubbles.  In addition to the early literacy benefits, bubbles are a good tool for a baby's eyes to track.  Once they have "found" their hands, they will try to touch them too.  Plus, they are fun.  If you inject some fun into what you do, chances are better that parents and kids will remember your idea and replicate it at home. 

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