Giggles are guaranteed when young children play with bubbles. Read on for some preschool bubble activities and a lesson to use in your classroom.
Prepare a preschool bubble day for your class. Take bubbles across the curriculum so that there will be activities to use both indoors and outside, this way the theme can be used yearlong. In the book, Gilberto and the Wind by Marie Hall Ets, a young boy and his playmate the wind, likes his soap bubbles. The wind carries his bubbles way up into the air for the sun to color and then blows them back down to the ground to make children laugh when they burst. Charm the children in your class, just like Gilberto with some intriguing activities below.
Bubble Blowing Activity
The activity will teach the following concepts:
- Bubbles are formed by blowing air into a liquid.
- A bubble has a round shape.
- When the bubble expands too much or touches a surface, it pops!
Before blowing real bubbles, teach the children how to "blow out" and not suck in. This can be done by practicing blowing skills with a plastic straw and feeling the wind on their hands. Do the children know how to blow gently? Children will quickly learn that only gentle blowing will produce bubbles.
Make some bubble solution in the classroom together. Mix 1 cup dishwashing soap with 6 cups of water in a large bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of glycerin (can be found in drugstores) to the solution which makes the bubbles stronger. It is best to blow bubbles outdoors, however if you plan to blow bubbles in the classroom cover the tables and floor with scrap paper or newspaper. Bubbles can be slippery, so use caution with the children.
Easy bubble blowers can be made by cutting the top off any size of plastic soda or water bottle. Invite the children to dip the cut end into the solution and then blow a bubble by blowing through the small end. Using a plastic kitchen funnel is the same concept.
At first, the children will chase and try to pop the bubbles. After letting them free play for a while, ask these questions:
- Where do you think the bubbles will go if you don't pop them?
- How far can bubbles go?
- Can you see rainbow colors in the bubbles?
Rainbow colors happen when light is broken into different colors when it passes through water.
Bubble Catch Game
Children can develop motor skills, like eye/hand coordination, by playing "bubble catch." As the children play in pairs, one child blows a bubble and the other one catches it on a piece of cardboard. Then the children switch positions. Another fun movement activity is to "bubble dance." Play music in different tempos and invite the class to pretend they are round bubbles floating around the room. They can spin and jump up and 'pop'!
Reinforce concepts while blowing bubbles using the words big, little, many, few, high and low. Ask questions like: Can you blow big bubbles? Little bubbles? Many bubbles? High bubbles? and so on.
Fill a container with bubble solution and a few drops of food coloring. Under your supervision, the children can use a straw and blow into the solution to create a cluster of bubbles. As the bubbles rise, place a sheet of white paper carefully on top. When the bubbles break they will leave an impression on the paper. Let each child have a turn to blow his bubbles and capture them on paper.
Sing a Song of Bubbles
Teach the children this piggyback song to the tune of "Sing a Song of Sixpence."
Sing a song of bubbles, floating in the air,
Filled with lots of colors swirling here and there.
I love blowing bubbles, I don't want to stop,
What fun it is to catch one and watch it go POP, POP!
Author Unknown, accessed 4/19/ 2010 from http://www.familytlc.net/issues/april2010/nature_2.html
Pop! A Book About Bubbles by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley [Collins, 2001]
Benny's Big Bubble by Jane O'Connor [Grosset & Dunlap, 1997]
Bubble Trouble by Margaret Mahy [Clarion, 2009]
Gilberto and the Wind by Marie Hall Ets
With this unit on preschool bubble activities and bubble theme for preschool you will be introducing science and the world of nature to your class. While you are all having fun, the children will be learning many new concepts.