Balloons can be fun for children of all ages. In this activity you will combine balloons with you and your child’s imagination and take “FUN” to a whole other level. By adding in a few easy rules they’ll be happily moving around. Using their gross motor skills while burning off some of that rambunctious energy at the same time. Try some of these balloon games and always keep a few handy to pull out when the going gets tough.
**Please remember that pieces of burst balloons can be a serious choking hazard. If you have younger kids, make sure they are supervised during these activities at all times**
DON’T LET THE BALLOON TOUCH THE…
- This is is the classic game that kids fall for every time.
- The rules are simple – hit the balloon up in the air but don’t let it touch the ground.
- To make it more challenging for older kids, have them juggle more than 1 balloon, or tie one hand behind their back.
- Time them to see how long they can do it for, or if you have multiple kids, have them count how many times they can hit it back and forth, then see if they can beat their time or score!
- This game is great for improving arm strength and hand-eye coordination. And can be done inside or outside.
PENGUIN WADDLE, RACES, AND OBSTACLE COURSES!
- Have your child place a balloon between their knees and have them waddle across the room without dropping it or popping it.
- Make it more challenging for older kids by having them go around a few obstacles. You could use cones, pillow’s, furniture, be as creative as you want. If they drop it or pop it, they have to go back to the start.
- For multiple kids, have them play as a team with the balloon placed between their hips. Once they get the hang of it, get out your timer to see how fast they can do it!
- Set up a course and see if your child can blow a balloon all the way to the finish line.
- If you’re inside, have them get down on all fours and blow it across the floor.
- To make it even harder have them do army crawls working their upper body and core strength along the way.
- If you have more space or are outside you may have the kids stand and blow the ball in the air. I warn you this is way more challenging even for adults!
BACKHAND BALLOON BALANCE
- Challenge your kids to balance a balloon on the back of their hand.
- See how long they can do it before it falls to the ground. You’d be surprised how much they will move around with this one!
BALLOON FOOT BALANCE
- For a real challenge, have your kids lie on the ground with their legs up in the air.
- Then try and balance the balloon on their feet. It’s not an easy task and requires a lot of concentration. It’s also a great core workout!
- Make a net by tying a piece of string between 2 chairs.
- Then have your child hit the balloon back and forth by running from one side to the other, trying to keep it off the floor or grass if you’re outside.
- If you have 2 or more kids, have them hit it over the net as many times as they can without it falling.
- Use a small kiddy hockey stick or make your own out of cardboard. If that isn’t an option you can use a lacrosse stick, bat, golf club, broom, any long object works.
- The objective is to navigate the balloon into a net (use a laundry basket or box on its side if you don’t have any smaller ones to bring indoors).
- If you have more than one child set up 2 goals as if you were playing hockey or soccer.
- You would have to clear space indoors to make the space work for you. A hallway, playroom, bedroom, basement, family room, garage are all good options.
- If you are outside you can use actual nets, cones, trash can, whatever is most convenient.
BALLOON PADDLE BALL
- Use a fly swatter, tennis/badminton racket or have your child create their own paddle using a paper plate and over-sized popsicle stick, a paint stirrer or wooden spoon would work too. Remember to be as creative as you want.
- Then use it to play the games above. These paddles are also fun for balancing your balloon.
- Have your kids try to keep their balloon on the paddle as they navigate through obstacles or run around the house. Not as easy as it sounds!
Activity by Dan Finucane, Floating Site Coordinator
Inspiration from www.whatmomslove.com