For many toddlers, the biggest stress of learning how to swim is the fear of getting water up their nose or in their mouth. Teaching your toddler how to blow bubbles on the water’s surface can lessen the toddler’s anxiety, but merely introducing this handy trick is fraught with its own difficulties. Your toddler might be anxious about getting his face anywhere near the water, let alone shoving it into the pool or lake. Start slowly and demonstrate the proper technique to show your toddler that blowing bubbles in the water isn’t scary, and can actually be kind of enjoyable.
Teach your toddler the concept of blowing bubbles in a glass. Hand your child a straw and a glass of his favorite beverage -- although milk is the most fun -- and teach him what blowing bubbles means.
Start your lesson in a safe environment, otherwise known as the bathtub. During your child’s next splash fest, settle her down before showing her how to blow a bubble in the water. Lower your face into the bath water and blow a few bubbles. As your raise your head, continue to show your toddler that in order to create the bubbles she must pucker her lips and blow. It might take patience and a few times dunking your face in the water before your toddler is willing to try.
Move your lesson into a bigger body of water. During your next visit to a nearby lake or pool, continue your lesson in bubble blowing. Lead your toddler to the shallow end of the pool, or a few feet into the lake, and once again show her how to blow a bubble. Splash and play around with your toddler to allow time for her body to adjust to the water temperature before encouraging her to do the same.
Turn blowing bubbles in the water into a game. If your toddler is still hesitant about blowing bubbles in the water, tell her that she’s a motor boat propelling along the lake, or that the bubbles will help destroy the evil sea monster called dad.
Praise your toddler for facing her fears and learning how to blow bubbles. This is one of the first steps necessary to teach a young child to swim, so go ahead and reward your toddler with a nautically themed gift, such as a set of water wings.