Week Three: Get Out and Grow Some Bubbles!

from Wildlife Promise

2 7/27/2009 // By Jennifer Ward // , , , ,

Hello Green Hour visitors! This is Jenny Ward, author of a new book, Let’s Go Outside!: Outdoor Activities and Projects to Get You and Your Kids Closer to Nature. I’m back for my third week sharing outdoor activities.

With school out, summertime may find tween-age kids with extra time on their hands. This is the perfect opportunity to get them outdoors for some creative play.

Sound tricky? Well, it’s not at all when you mix your child’s free time with a little bit of fresh air, a little bit of soap and a little bit of water. I’m talking bubble making. But not just any old bubbles. Giant, GINORMOUS bubbles. Your child will have a blast experimenting with this soapy, cohesive solution as it mixes with air and wind. Combine this activity with an outdoor picnic and you have a certain recipe for fun.

Materials

Soap Solution

  • A bucket
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons of glycerin, which you can purchase from most drugstores
  • 4 to 8 tablespoons of liquid dish soap
  • Enough water to make a consistency that’s soapy, but not too thin or thick

The Bubble Maker

  • 6 to 8 feet of medium weight cotton string
  • Two wooden dowels, 1/4 inch in diameter and 2 to 3 feet long each

Knot one end of the string to the end of one dowel rod. Measure about two to three feet from the knotted stick and knot it around the end of the second stick, so the string connects the two sticks together. Knot the remaining section of string back to the first stick, creating one giant loop. (See picture below)

Making a Bubble

Submerse the loop of string into the bucket of solution, holding the sticks at the end where the string isn’t attached.

Raise the string out of the solution, step back and slowly separate the stick ends, creating a window with the string. Move your string through the air and watch as the solution catches the breeze, expands and grows into an amazing, “”ginormous”” bubble.

Tips for the Best Bubbles

  • Create your bubbles in a shady place, if possible.
  • Create your bubbles in the morning or evening, when the sun is less intense.
  • Experiment with blowing bubbles after a rainfall. The moisture in the air will seemingly make the bubbles last forever.
  • Experiment with popping bubbles. Use a wet finger. Use a dry finger. Which popped it more easily?

Until next week!

Note: Be sure not to spill the soap solution on the ground, as large amounts can harm plants and wildlife.

Happy trails out in nature!

Jennifer Ward is the author of I Love Dirt! and numerous children’s books, all of which present nature to kids. She lives in Illinois. Learn more about her at www.jenniferwardbooks.com.