For the last 8 years I’ve never been without bubbles in my speech therapy bag! Here are some ways you can use them to encourage speech and language development with your little ones at home.
1) Develop cause and effect
Children begin to learn that their actions caused the desired event through cause and effect toys and activities. Bubbles are a great way of introducing this skill as you enjoy popping all the bubbles!
2) Use bubbles to teach a word or sign
Blow bubbles for your child and encourage them to ask for ‘more’ or to blow the bubbles ‘again’. Repetition is key when learning new words!
3) Use bubbles to help develop phrases
If your child is starting to combine words, practise using phrases such as ‘more bubbles’, ‘I want bubbles please’ etc.
4) Teach your child to request
Tie the bubbles really tight and give them to your child. Your child will need to ask for help. This is the perfect opportunity to practise the following key words and phrases, ‘open’, ‘help’, ‘open please’, ‘I need help’.
5) Use bubbles to teach a sound
As you pop the bubbles with your child say ‘pop, pop, pop, pop’ in a quiet voice. The [p] sound is one of the first sounds to emerge in speech.
6) Use bubbles to help develop eye contact
Blowing bubbles can encourage lots of eye contact as your child anticipates more. Wait for your child to make eye contact before blowing again.
7) Use bubbles as a motivator
Bubbles can be used to motivate children to do a less desired activity e.g. ‘First work, then bubbles! ‘
8) Use bubbles to teach language concepts
With older children, bubbles can be used to develop some higher level concepts. Emphasize the following concepts as you have fun together;
- Big, bigger, biggest e.g. ‘Who blew the biggest bubble?’
- Small, smaller, smallest e.g. ‘My bubbles are smaller than yours’.
- High/ low e.g. ‘Shall I bow them up high or down low?’