Virtual Family Place Playgroup: Early Literacy and General Parenting

During our virtual Family Place Playgroups, you will learn ways to spark learning and play at home with common household ingredients.

On January 27, 2021 Plano Public Library hosted the Family Place Playgroup: Early Literacy and General Parenting, a virtual workshop on Zoom featuring a hands-on activity, shared songs and rhymes, and questions and answers with child development experts in our community. In this blog post, you’ll find a recording of our activity, along with additional resources to help answer your questions.

Activity: Homemade Bubbles

Bubble play helps get your child ready to read and write by improving motor control and visual tracking. Bubbles also introduce new vocabulary and simple science, math and art skills. This activity teaches you how to make your own bubbles at home using common household ingredients.

En español
Supplies

Below is what you will need to participate in this activity:

  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1/3 cup liquid dishwashing soap
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Food coloring
  • Mixing bowl
  • Small containers
  • Spoon or craft stick for stirring
  • Straws or bubble wands
Instructions
  1. Mix the water and sugar together until the sugar completely dissolves.
  2. Slowly add the dishwashing soap and stir, being careful not to create too many bubbles. The more suds you create, the less your bubbles will work later.
  3. Divide the mixture into smaller containers.
  4. Add 5 to 10 drops of food coloring to each container and stir in gently, avoiding bubbles as much as possible.
Review and Extensions

Talk about your bubbles as you play together:

  • What size bubbles are you making? Are they big or small?
  • How do different bubble wands change your bubbles?
  • What shapes are your bubbles?

Ask the Expert

Each playgroup session includes a featured guest from our community. For this session, we were joined by Tomeka Thomas with Family Compass. She shared information about general parenting, or how we promote and support all the developmental areas of our children, and early literacy, or how we help children develop the skills they need to read and write.

Here are some of the questions we talked about:

Question: Why do I need to read to my child?

Answer: Reading to your child helps with their brain development, stimulating the synapses needed for language development. Reading together helps your child learn to form words, build language skills, and grow their brain. You can even read to your baby while they are in utero!

Question: How do I know my child’s needs?

Answer: Knowing what your child needs comes with bonding and attachment. You will learn what your child’s different cries mean, and learn specific cues the more time you spend together. This time spent together lets you learn about your child, but also helps your child learn about you as a parent.

Question: At what age do I play with my child?

Answer: You can start playing with your child right away. Start by spending time with your baby and letting them explore your face. As your child grows, add more activities. Get down on your child’s level and explore your world together.

Do you have other questions? Be sure to reach out to our community resource professional for more assistance. You can learn more about Family Compass on their website, or contact the Collin County Growing as Parents program at (972) 633-6726 or by email at info@family-compass.org.


Continue Learning

Explore some of these books from our collection:

Baby Play edited by Wendy S. Masi and Roni Cohen Leiderman Request
From the first month home through the twelfth, Baby Play offers doctor-approved, age-appropriate activities that stimulate discovery, begin communication, and nurture parental bonding.

Experiments with Soap by Salvatore Tocci Request
Projects and experiments use soap to explain such topics as surface tension and air currents, as well as why soap gets things clean.

Make Your Own Playdough, Paint, and Other Craft Materials: Easy Recipes to Use with Young Children by Patricia Caskey Request
Provides recipes and instructions for creating clay, paint, glue, playdough, bubbles, and other craft materials.

Weird and Wonderful Science Experiments: Volume 2: Cool Creations by Elizabeth Snoke Harris Request
This fact- and fun-filled book includes tons of simple, kid-tested science experiments, many of which can be done with items from around the house, and require little to no supervision!


For more information and resources, be sure to download the session handout. You can find more about our upcoming programs by visiting our programming calendar or by signing up for our newsletter.

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