Pop! Pop! Pop! Bubbles! BUBBLES are a GREAT TOOL to encourage development!

by Michelle Yuen, PT

Every kid loves to pop bubbles, go ahead have lots of bubble popping fun – here are some activities ideas to help improve your child’s development!

  • Catch bubbles. You can catch big bubbles with wet hands! So immerse your hands in the bubble mixture and catch and play with bubbles in your hands.  This is great for trunk strength, coordination and reaching.
  • Taking Turns. You can work on turn taking with your child by having caregiver or siblings take turns.
  • Sit and reach to pop bubbles. This is a great activity for babies working on their sitting balance. The baby will go from a hunched (flexed) position when reaching toward the floor to a straight up (elongated) position as he reaches forward and upward. This position is working the back, neck, shoulders, and visual system; baby must coordinate all the muscles. You may want a boppy or pillow behind him just in case!
  • Eye contact. Once you have started the bubble play and your child is enjoying it, take a moment to PAUSE before blowing more. This is a wonderful opportunity to gain your child’s full attention and make eye contact as you hold the bubble wand to your face. Modeling “Blow!” or “ready-set- go!” is a way to add fun and language to the play.
  • Bubble Chase. Have the child close their eyes, blow bubbles and say “go!” The child must count and pop as many bubbles as they can before they pop on the ground. This activity will work the child’s dynamic standing and walking coordination. 
  • Watch bubbles change color. Bubbles are full of color and you can talk with your child about the colors they see. Notice them changing from blue, green, yellow, until it will eventually looks colorless before popping.
  • Blow bubbles onto a table top. You will need to make your table top wet so your bubbles don’t pop. A plastic kids table works great!  Use straws/tubes and bubble solution to blow bubbles directly onto the table. Can you create a flower with the bubbles or an animal like a snake? This is a great activity for breath control with speech and also reaching to pop them at the end! One of the most important emotional regulation activities for children -well anyone really – is deep breathing. Blowing bubbles is a great way to practice this!

These are just a few of the many ways to use bubbles to encourage your child’s developmental skills. Worried about spills? Check out our favorite no-spill bubble container 😉

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An 8-week program for children age 3-5 with sensory processing differences

Children with sensory processing differences have difficulty with regulation, which sometimes makes it difficult for them to interact with the world around them. Our Sensory Explorers group targets regulation in order to build engagement! This group is led by pediatric occupational therapist Mackenzie Baldock and developmental therapist/PLAY Project Consultant Brenna Thompson, both of whom specialize in using developmentally appropriate strategies to support children so they can learn new skills. Group meets once/week for 60 minutes.

Wondering if this class is appropriate for your child? Some characteristics of kids who benefit: easily frustrated with play, repetitive play, difficulty sitting/keeping still to engage in play, refuses to allow others to engage in play, unable to be messy, overly busy, quickly overwhelmed in a busy environment, picky eater, difficulty tolerating grooming/dressing/diapering routines, struggles with transitions/following a group plan/routine. 

Goals of the group include:

  • Child participating in a variety of sensory play activities
  • Engaging socially with others in the group
  • Providing a non threatening environment where children can experience new sensations with the support of a pediatric Occupational Therapist and PLAY Project consultant
  • Providing personalized resources to caregivers, so they better understand the sensory system and learn strategies to assist their child with regulation outside of group
  • Opportunity to meet with other local families
 
 

Group begins with a 30 minute Open House on Tuesday October 4 for your child & caregiver/family to attend. This provides an opportunity to meet the therapists, acclimate your child to the space and provide some initial information about your child’s responses to a variety of sensory activities. 30 minute sessions will be offered from 12:30-4:30 on 10/4 with sign up sent with registration.

 

GROUP MEETS for 6 weeks October 11-November 15: Tuesdays 2:00-3:00 OR Tuesdays 3:30-4:30. ***We ask that families who are able remain flexible on the time slot so we can effectively pair your child with others that they will gain the maximum benefit from for social interactions!** Caregivers are encouraged to stay to support their child and learn helpful strategies, however other options will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Caregiver education is a key component of this program. Make-up date in case of class cancellation: 11/22/22

 

Group ends with a 15-30 minute Zoom wrap up session with caregiver(s) on November 29th. Every participant will receive a short, personalized Session Summary report complete with suggestions/recommendations for helpful sensory supports in the child’s home/classroom/community.