Monday, October 6, 2014

Balls, Balloons and Bubbles - Bubble Blower

speech therapy, language therapy, body parts, bubbles, following directions, language skills

Bubbles are fun for kids and adults! One of my favorite features, as a speech therapist, is that they run out of bubble juice and the child needs to ask for more. This leads to high motivation to practice whatever speech or language skill we are addressing!

This little bubble blower (it's not a bubble gun as many preschool and daycare locations are sensitive about any type of gun, so I stayed away from the bubble guns), has a little foam fan that blows the bubbles so we can practice as we are making the bubbles.

If your child needs to work on oral motor skills, a bubble wand that they have to blow through to make the bubbles may be a better choice.

Speech Sounds
I've been using these bubbles to work on speech skills like making stretching sounds (s, z, f, v, sh, n, m and l) and holding out that sound as we push the button to turn on the bubble blower fan.

We have also used pages of pictures to work on speech sounds at the word, phrase or sentence levels. Depending on the level the child is currently working on, we say 1-3 target words then we blow some bubbles! When the bubble juice runs out, we say more words and refill our bubble blower and do it again!

Language Skills

I love to use bubbles to address body parts. We will pop bubbles with a certain part of our body. For example, for one round of bubbles we'll use our knees, for another round we'll use our toes. I will use body parts they know first, then introduce a new body part to teach that body part. I'll do the new body part more frequently than familiar body parts.

We also used the bubbles to work on following two step directions. For this little bubble blower, you have to hold the button and move it around (or it doesn't really blow the bubbles). So I'll give that two step direction first so they can see that they need to follow both parts to be successful with this bubble blower. After that, between rounds, we'll follow two step directions that are related to the objects in the room around us (touch the door then sit on the mat, or go to the chair and sit down). For more information about following directions, check out this post here.

You can use bubbles to work on location concepts. You can talk about where the bubble landed: "Look it's on the table" and ask "where is that bubble?!" while you point. You can direct your child to blow the bubbles to certain directions: up, down, near objects, over tables, under chairs, on, etc... or for your child to stand in different places to blow the bubbles: stand on/off of/near a mat, next to/on a chair, under the table, etc...

Using manners or making phrases/complete sentences are good skills to work on with bubbles. "More bubbles" can be an early phrase (I only like the word "more" when paired with a noun, "more" is not enough, I'd rather have a child say only "bubbles" than only "more." Often children will say or sign "more" to request everything instead of learning the names for their favorite objects. Ok, I'll get off my little soapbox about using "more" now!) or "May I have more bubbles, please" for a higher language skill.

Ok, one more idea. You can have the child tell you size words like big or little to request that you make bubbles of a specific size. Or you can blow the bubbles and have him tell what kind of bubbles they are. This will take you a little bit of practice (and good bubbles) to get them to be the size that you want!

Really, there are so many different skills you can address just by working on the targeted skill then giving the child a refill on the bubble juice!

How do you use bubbles to work on your child's speech and language skills?

Disclosure: Some of the links in the post above may be “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Please know that I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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