Saturday, 8 December 2012


Being able to articulate the fantastic learning potential of simple early childhood experiences can greatly enrich your programming and your credibility in the industry.

You've probably blown bubbles for children many times. Very likely you thought of them as a bit of fun or a good way to distract children, however there are endless possibilities for learning that you might not have considered.

1. Bubbles are pretty. Looking at attractive objects helps children to develop their aesthetic sense. With a background of exposure to beautiful and visually stimulating things, children will develop the ability to create visually and artistically.

2. Bubbles are in nature. Bubbles teach children about natural processes, how water takes different forms when it interacts with substances or objects in nature. This could lead to discussion about waterfalls or rainbows.

3. Bubbles are a sensory experience. They are visually appealing, translucent, fragile, sticky, stretchy, wet, cold, and taste soapy if they fly into your mouth.

4. Science concepts are involved. Children learn about chemistry when they discover that bubbles are formed from soap or soap mixed with water. Children learn about physics when they explore the forces of the air or the wind as it supports the bubbles in floating or moving.

5. Children learn about maths concepts when they discover that bubbles have little weight and little density. They develop spatial awareness as they chase the bubbles and learn to orient themselves and their bodies in the physical space.

6. Children learn about cause and effect. Bubbles emerge from soapy water when they are blown through an object, a bubble blower or a straw. Bubbles can stretch and change shape when they are blown either quickly or slowly. Bubbles burst when they are touched. When they burst on the floor they can leave a wet patch on the floor.

7. Bubbles are good for children's physical development. Blowing bubbles develops the muscles around the mouth, strengthening them for use in talking, singing, whistling and playing musical instruments. Blowing bubbles takes skill. Children need to learn to coordinate these muscles in order to blow bubbles through an object. Watching bubbles and tracking them with the eyes helps to strengthen the muscles behind children's eyes. Children's eye muscles need to be strong and coordinated so that they can move together effectively.

8. Bubbles can be chased. Children develop their abilities in running, bending, stretching and balancing when chasing bubbles. They learn to coordinate these movements. Catching bubbles strengthens the muscles of the hands, wrists, arms and fingers and increases children's ability to coordinate these muscles. Children will then use these muscles for manipulating objects, feeding themselves, achieving self-help goals such as tying shoelaces and doing up buttons, and for using pencils to write and art implements for painting etc.

9. Bubbles are great for children's respiratory development. Running and chasing develops cardiovascular fitness and blowing bubbles increases lung capacity. This results in more effective blood and oxygen flow through the body, leading to better overall health and brain function.

10. Bubbles are a social experience. Children share the space when they are enjoying bubbles. They move around each other, becoming aware of each other in the space. They learn to anticipate others' movements and intentions. They interact with facial expressions and body language, sharing their laugher and their joy.

11. Bubbles are lots of fun. Children become very excited when they see bubbles floating through the air. Laughter and feelings of joy lead to overall emotional, social and physical wellbeing. A capacity for joy and the enthusiasm for experience will create children, and later adults who are emotionally balanced, open to new experiences, socially adept and intellectually aware.

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