Blowing bubbles with a toddler is one of my favorite things to do in therapy. It’s a simple activity that can be used to target many skills and is easy for parents to do too. Here’s a quick rundown of several skills that you can work on while blowing bubbles.
- Eye contact – Child looks at adult to indicate that s/he wants to see bubbles.
- Requesting using a sign – Child produces sign for “please” or “bubbles” or “more” to indicate a request.
- Requesting using a picture – Child points to a picture of bubbles to make a request.
- Requesting using a single word – Child says “please” or “bubbles” or “more” to ask for bubbles.
- Requesting using a phrase – Child puts 2 or 3 words together to make a request like “more bubbles” or “blow bubbles.”
- Commenting – Child or adult makes a comment about what is happening such as “That was a big bubble!” or “Look at all those bubbles,” or child says “bubble” while pointing at a bubble.
- Imitating words – Child repeats a word or phrase that the adult says.
- Producing /p/ and /b/ sounds – There are plenty of opportunities to say “pop” or “bubble” repeatedly.
The important thing to remember is that it is the interaction between the child and the adult that is the key. Simply turning on a bubble machine won’t promote language development. When the machine blows the bubbles, the child becomes a passive participant in the activity. When the adult and child actually blow bubbles together, then there is true interaction from which the child can learn.
Do you have questions about language development or speech therapy? Gainesville-area parents can contact me for an in-home consultation, and everyone is welcome to comment here or email me for more information.