Wondering how to make foam? You're in luck! I'm sharing the easiest bubble foam recipe using just TWO play foam ingredients for the ultimate sensory learning experience!
- WATCH How To Make Bubble Foam | EASY SENSORY PLAY SOAP FOAM RECIPE:
- Bubble Foam Supplies:
- How To Make Foam For Kids:
- Step 1: Select your container
- Step 2: Mix your fluffy soap foam!
- Step 3 (optional): Add color
- Step 4 (optional): Extend the life!
It's no secret there are tons of benefits to foam sensory play! You can even had your toddler or kids learn how to make play foam and do it themselves! Plus I'm sharing loads of foam sensory play ideas and activities for toddlers and big kids!
Bubble Foam Supplies:
Sensory foam is one of those fun activities that’s easy to do because you more than likely have everything you need already in your home!
You don’t have to run to the craft store to buy specialty supplies. At most, you might need to drop by the grocery store to pick up a few bottles of food coloring. But most of the supplies should be in your kitchen or bathroom.
Supplies you'll need for the play foam recipe:
- Tear-free bubble bath
- Food coloring
- A mixer (either hand or stand mixer is fine) or a whisk
- Cornstarch (optional)
- Container for sensory play
You’ll see that many people recommend dish soap as a bubble foam ingredient. But if you have a child that constantly puts their hands in their face, regular dish soap can lead to irritated eyes. It’s better to err on the side of caution — especially with younger toddlers — and use soap that won’t lead to meltdowns later on.
If you're looking to extend the lifespan of foam for sensory play, considering adding cornstarch to the sensory foam solution. This can be ideal for older kids who have longer attention spans and for bubble obsessed toddlers!
How To Make Foam For Kids:
Making your own play foam is one of those fun activities that you can get your littles involved with from start to finish.
It’s an easy process that also serves as an early introduction to STEM in a low-pressure setting. Children get to watch as simple household ingredients transform before their eyes.
Step 1: Select your container
Start by thinking about how much foam you're foam to want to make and where you'll give it to your kids for sensory play.
Select a container large enough to hold the bubble foam mixture.
Step 2: Mix your fluffy soap foam!
The best bubble foam recipe follows a two to one ratio. That's two parts water to one part bubble bath.
Put your desired amount of water and bubble bowl into the bowl. With a whisk or mixer, whip the ingredients together for about a minute, until you have a nice fluffy foam.
The goal is to create stiff bubble peaks similar to if you were making homemade whipped cream. Once you’ve reached the desired consistency, transfer your bubble foam to your play container.
Repeat as needed using the 2:1 ratio of water to bubble bath for additional foam colors.
Step 3 (optional): Add color
I personally find you get a richer colored foam if you add food coloring AFTER you've made the bubble foam, instead of before.
When coloring soap foam, I make a regular batch, then in smaller bowls, scoop however much I want, add the food coloring, then remix the foam. The foam comes out even fluffier and a much more vibrant color!
Step 4 (optional): Extend the life!
Add a tablespoon of cornstarch or arrow starch. This can help thicken the fluffy soap mixture so the bubbles last a bit longer. You can do this before mixing or after.
If you find there's too much water at the base of your bowl, just add more soap or tear free bubble bath.
If you find your fluffy foam is deflating too quickly, either add more cornstarch or keep the hand mixer nearby to re fluff the foam.
If you find your play foam isn't colorful enough, try remixing the bubble foam before adding more color. The color tends to sink to the bottom of the fluffy foam.
Foam Activities For Toddlers + Sensory Play Ideas:
Bubble bath foam can provide endless fun for toddlers. And let’s be honest, it can also keep little ones occupied for a bit while you take care of any necessary to-dos. Along with freeplay, consider these cute ideas to help get your toddlers engaged and learning new skills.
- Sensory bin base: Instead of using sand or food products as the base of a sensory bin, use your bubble foam! Simply add other materials, cups, and scoops for your kids to practice transferring the mixture. You can theme it where the foam is blue and you use sea creatures for instance
- Hide & Seek — Foam Edition: Hide objects in the foam and have your child search for them
- Color Theory: If you made more than one color, have your child identify them and ask them to place scientist and see what happens when they mix two primary colors together.
- Play Make Believe: Give them a few animal figurines or dolls to play in the foam. You can even tell them a story that you act out with the figurines in the foam if they don't seem interested right away.
- Bath time Fun time: For the ultimate easy cleanup, why not let them play with colorful bubble foam in the bath?
- Exploring Their Senses: Bubble foam is an immersive activity. Get kids thinking about their senses by asking them how the bubbles feel, what they sound like when they squish them between their fingers, and whether the bubbles feel warm or cold.
- Blow bubbles: give them a straw, a bubble wand, and even a little horn and have them blow bubbles into the fluffy foam mixture to see what happens. Can they make even more bubbles from it?! Do the different materials create different types of bubbles?
- Wash their toys: Have them wash their toys using the foam bubbles to get extra squeaky clean!
- Sidewalk paint: Repurpose old bubble foam into squeeze jars and have your toddler use the squeeze jars to paint the side walk
- Bubble Foam Art: Using liquid watercolors and cookie cutters, have your toddler “paint” inside the cookie cutter with different water color paint into a base of white bubble foam to practice writing, numbers, or just for some fun holiday sensory play!
- Paint the foam: Using white foam as the base, give your kids different cups of colored foam and have them paint a picture with the colored foam in the white foam base using their fingers or paint brushes!
- Paint with foam: On paper, have your toddler paint using the colored bubble foam
- Foam printing: Let your toddler create a picture using the foam, then take another piece of paper and teach them to press it over their foam art work to transfer the image.
- Simon Says: Especially if using the play foam in the bath, have your child get a little silly and add the foam to their nose, knees, elbows, etc. This teaches them to follow instructions, identify body parts, and while working on practical life skills of watching themselves!
Questions To Ask During Bubble Foam Play:
Bubble foam play is a great time to get little ones talking. Not only does this help to build their vocabulary, but it also helps them to learn how to express themselves. And for parents and caretakers, it gives you a chance to engage with your child and better understand how they think and see the world around them. Here are a few questions to help get you started:
- How do the bubbles feel in your hands?
- What color(s) is the bubble foam?
- If we mixed these colors together, what do you think will happen?
- What is (toy name) doing in the bubbles?
- Where else can we play with the bubble foam?
- Where does the foam go if we blow on it? Where does the foam go if we clap our hands?
- How can we make the foam fluffier? (especially if you taught the kids what makes soap foam in the first place!)
Benefits Of Foam Sensory Play:
- Sensory development
- Fine motor skills
- Oral motor skills
- Visual tracking skills
- Gross motor skills
- Hand-eye coordination
- Following directions
- Practical life skills
Along with being a fun way to pass the time, bubble foam is a great sensory play activity. By interacting with your child while they play, you’re helping to build their speech and language development. Practice the /b/, /p/, and /f/ sounds by repeating things like “flick the fluffy foam!” then saying “bye bye bubble foam!”
You’re also tapping into creativity and storytelling, along with imaginative play capabilities by creating backstories.
Identifying and combining colors also builds logical thinking and problem solving. Playing hide and seek in the bubble foam can also build fine motor skills as children fish out smaller toys. And of course, you’re laying the building blocks of STEM learning by performing a very simple science experiment. Children get to learn about transformations and what happens when you combine different substances together.
Starting with little babies, playing with bubbles helps with visual tracking. As kids get older and start to blow bubbles on their own.
Playing with bubbles helps to strengthen the muscles in their mouth and jaw for speech development, while also building mindfulness and a focus on deep breathing. You can also engage children in a fun gross motor activity of big silly movements as they chase the foam bubbles around the yard. While we love using traditional bubble wands, we can’t get enough of our bubble sensory play for toddlers and turning traditional bubbles into foam is a whole new way to do it!
You can also teach your child to follow directions and learn body parts in a silly foamy game of Simon Says!
Soam foam is a great way to reinvent bubbles for toddlers! I hope this bubble foam recipe provides SO much fun and gives you even more sensory play ideas! Kids can even learn what makes soap foam then make their own using just two ingredients with this simple soap foam recipe! Which is a fun activity in itself!
If you make this bubble foam, I'd love to see how it turns out and what play foam ideas you come up with! Tag me on IG @theconfusedmillennial!
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