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story.lead_photo.caption NWA Democrat-Gazette/FLIP PUTTHOFF Arden Cearley (left) and Carson Stoyanov, students at Central Park Elementary School in Bentonville, test liquids Tuesday for blowing bubbles as part of a class project.

BENTONVILLE -- A common children's toy was the basis of an unusual writing assignment as some fourth-graders at Central Park Elementary School became product reviewers Tuesday.

Amy Holland gave each of her students a bottle of Blitz bubbles. Students were expected to play with the bubbles and jot down their observations. Then they'd have to write either an opinion or an expository piece about the toy, she said.

Classic toy

Bubbles is one of 63 toys that have been inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame in Rochester, N.Y. Bubbles joined the Hall of Fame along with little green army men and the Rubik’s Cube in 2014.


Holland, who co-teaches 56 fourth-graders, received the bubbles through a contact at Imperial Toy, the California-based manufacturer of Blitz bubbles. The contact told her she could provide other toys throughout the year for the students to test, Holland said.

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She beamed as she watched her students blowing bubbles across the Central Park playground.

"They're excited about writing now. Some of the kids that don't like to put things down on paper are filling their page up, so it makes it fun for me," Holland said.

The activity brings the two kinds of writing -- expository and opinion -- to life, she said.

"Instead of just saying, 'Circle which one is expository and which one is opinion,' they're having to apply it," Holland said.

After a while, she gathered the students to discuss what they'd learned.

Murphee Wasson was one of about five students who brought bubbles from home to compare to the Blitz bubbles. She said the Blitz bubbles performed better than hers.

Murphee also noticed using one side of the Blitz bubble stick produced more but smaller bubbles than the other side of the stick.

The Blitz bubbles also came in three scents -- apple, grape and orange. Several students said they liked the scents.

Arden Cearley, 9, gave the bubbles a positive review.

"The solution was more thick and it was more fun to play with, because they lasted longer than normal bubbles," Arden said.

Joey Misiak, 10, observed how shaking the bottle made the liquid inside turn from clear to bubbly, a fact he said he intended to write about.

Students are supposed to start their rough drafts today. They'll also work on an online presentation, Holland said.

She'll pass copies of the students' observations on to her contact at Imperial Toy. The students' reviews of the next toy will indicate to Holland how far they've come in their writing, she said.

"We'll move into using sources, more backing up their opinions and things like that. So it will dive deeper and deeper each time we product-test," Holland said.

Imperial Toy sells bubble-related items such as bubble machines. The company also offers a number of other products such as glow sticks, water balloon launchers and dolls, according to its website.

NW News on 09/27/2017

Print Headline: Education bubbles over onto playground at Bentonville school

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