It is no secret at Jellybeans Music that I love bubbles probably as much as babies and toddlers. I love watching the tiny babies focus on the bubbles swirling above their heads. I never tire of toddlers trying to catch and blow them and hearing early talkers say the word 'ubble, ubble' as soon as they see me, still gives me goosebumps. But did you know that I use bubbles not just because I love them but because they are a fanastic early years development tool?
As soon as the bubbles come out, I always start talking about how blowing bubbles can help to build mouth & jaw muscle tone and support breath control, all essential for speech development but did you know that bubbles also support mathematical developmental? It's not rocket science but if you encourage your child to count the bubbles with you, you are helping them learn to apply the number labels to actuals. Discuss what shape the bubbles are - again, words like circle, round are introduced in a 'real' way!
Watching the bubbles float and fly around the room is a real workout for your child's eyes. Very small babies will be learning to use both eyes simultaneously to focus upon the bubbles, whilst slightly older babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers will be reaching up strengthening motor skills and eye-hand co-ordination as they reach for and try to pop the bubbles. One of my boys really didn't enjoy messy play - not for him playing with spaghetti and baked beans but he really enjoy the 'feel' of bubbles and I think bubbles encouraged him to try new tactile sensations.
Finally, don't forget it can be very relaxing just watching bubbles floating slowly down to the ground, so even the quietest child can enjoy a cuddle watching them.
But, bubbles are not just for Jellybeans - don't forget to enjoy them at home together. Why not try blowing bubbles over your baby/child while they are in the bath? The bubbles will float and land both on the water (bubbles pop on dry surfaces!) and your child, giving a fun, visual, sensory experience. Or, if you have a play tunnel, why not blow bubbles through the tunnel? This will encourage your child to crawl through the tunnel and help to develop their sense of spatial awareness.
Take your bubbles outside and watch how high they fly! Add a couple of drops of food colouring for extra pretty bubbles and try catching these coloured bubbles on paper! I could go on and on, but perhaps the best tip of all, is to always have a small pot of bubbles in your handbag for those days when your small one is just restless and you have lots and lots to do.
Bubbles, bubbles fly around.
Bubbles, bubbles touch the ground.
Bubbles landing on my nose.
Bubbles landing on my toes.
Bubbles, bubbles fly around, bubbles, bubbles touch the ground