Give a young child a balloon and they will play with it for a lot longer than most fancy toys. What is it about balloons that excite and engage them? Perhaps it’s because they’re bright, light, bouncy and large – very peculiar properties when compared to most other familiar objects.
Balloon activities for preschoolers
Today, here is something for bub’s older brother or sister – balloon activities for preschoolers! I’ve put together a few balloon-themed music, art and drama activities for you to try with your Preschooler at home. My Miss 3 loved them all and I hope your little spark does too!
Music Activity 1 – Rhyme with actions
I Had A Little Balloon
Words and Actions
I had a little balloon (make a circle with hands)
That I hugged tight to me (hug self tight)
There was a great big BANG! (clap hands loudly)
No more balloon, you see.
But if I had this many more (hold up five fingers)
I wouldn’t hug them tight (shake head “no”)
I’d just hold onto the strings (grasp strings)
And fly them like a kite. (raise both arms high)
NOTE! This is one my older “beta” activities, one of the first that I produced before I started on the new and improved Baby’s Music Program… If you’d like to checkout what my baby’s music activities look like, you can sign up for 8 sessions here.
Music Activity 2 – Dancing with balloons
What to Do
- Give your child a balloon.
- Play the music The Frantic Clown and bounce the balloon in the air to each other.
- Have a rest and talk about the music using the discussion points (optional).
- Play the music Floating In Love and bounce the balloon in the air.
- Talk about the music again as per below.
- What type of music was that?
- How did that music make you feel?
- How was it different to the last piece of music we listened to?
- Brain development: Combining music and movement forges pathways in the brain
- Thinking skills: Comparing and contrasting two different types of music
- Language and speech development (reciting a rhyme)
- Physical: Eye to hand co-ordination (bouncing balloons and hand actions) and gross motor (dancing, jumping)
Art Activity – Papier-mâché Balloon
● A balloon
● Colourful tissue paper cut up into squares
● PVA glue/ water – put glue in a container and mix in a few tablespoons of water until it becomes a thin, runny paste
● Wide mug/vase or container
What to Do
- Set the balloon in a paper cup so it won’t roll around.
- Demonstrate how to paste glue onto pieces of tissue paper and layer them onto the balloon, covering it in more glue.
- Cover the whole balloon using all of the colours and start to build up a second layer.
- Keep brushing the runny glue over the top as this will help it harden and shine.
- When you think it has enough layers sit the balloon in a vase or wide mug to dry.
- When it the balloon has dried you might like to turn it into a hot air balloon! Just cut off the bottom, attach two strings or ribbons to the balloon and either a paper cup or basket.
- Have your child identify the different colours of paper.
- What do you think will happen when the glue dries?
- How long do you think it will take to dry?
- Fine motor skills: Manipulating the paintbrush
- Investigating materials: Changes from dry to wet, soft to hard
- Sensory and messy play
- Personal learning: Promoting independence
Drama Activity – The story of Mr Bouncy and Mr Boppy
● 2 balloons
● Permanent marker
● 2 boxes big enough for balloons to fit inside ie. Nappy Boxes
● Coloured markers/ paints (optional)
What to Do
- Watch the story of Mr Bouncy and Mr Boppy with your child (Video demonstration below).
- Make your own box houses out of boxes – draw houses and use paint/markers to decorate.
- Give your child a permanent marker and two balloons to draw their own Mr Bouncy and Mr Boppy (they may choose to give their balloon characters different names).
- Read the story aloud as your child acts it out with the balloons.
- Your child may like to have a go at retelling the story themselves. Prompt them as much as required.
- Make sure you put the permanent marker away in a safe place when your child has finished using it. 😉
- Use as much expression as possible when reading the story ie. vary the pitch and tone of your voice, use a different voice for each character.
- Create your own version of the story together ie. What else was Mr Boppy doing when Mr Bouncy came to visit? What if they lived in boats instead of houses?
- Encourage improvisation – add different sound effects/ songs etc.
The story of Mr Bouncy and Mr Boppy
This is Mr Bouncy he lives in a little house over here.
This is Mr Boppy he lives in a little house over here.
One day Mr Bouncy opened his door (POP!) and came out.
“Oh it is such a lovely day I think I will go and visit my friend Mr Boppy.”
So he closed his door (POP!) and went up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill until he came to Mr Boppys’s door.
He knocked on the door,”knock! knock! knock!!”
Mr Boppy was making a milkshake (Burrrrrrrrrrrr) so he didn’t hear Mr Bouncy when he knocked on the door. “knock! knock! knock!!”
“Oh, Mr Boppy must not be home,” said Mr Bouncy.
“I think I’ll go back home.”
So he went up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill.
He opened the door (POP!) and went in and closed the door (POP!) .
But he was so tired that he had to lie down and take a nap.
Meanwhile, Mr Boppy finished making his milkshake and turned off the blender. He opened the door (POP!) and came out. “Oh, what a lovely day I think I’ll go and visit my friend Mr Bouncy.”
So he closed his door. (POP!) He went up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill until he came to Mr Bouncy’s house.
He knocked on the door. “knock! knock! knock!!”
But Mr Bouncy was taking a nap and didn’t hear him when he went “knock! knock! knock!!”
So Mr Boppy thought Mr Bouncy mustn’t be home. “Oh well, I’ll go home.”
So he went up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill until he came to his house.
He opened the door (POP!) and went in.
Meanwhile Mr Bouncy finished his nap. “Ah, I do wish I could see my good friend Mr Boppy.”
Mr Boppy thought, “I wish I could see my friend Mr Bouncy. I‘ll try again.”
So each of them opened their doors, (POP!) (POP!) closed their doors(POP!) (POP!) and they went up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill until they met in the middle. “Why hello Mr Boppy! I was on my way to see you.”
“Well hello Mr Bouncy, I was on my way to see you.”
“I came to see you earlier but you weren’t home.”
“Oh that must have been while I was making a milkshake in the noisy blender.”
“I came to see you but you weren’t home.”
“That must have been when I was taking a nap.”
“Well come on over to my house now.”
So they went up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill until they came to Mr Boppy’s house.
They opened the door and went in. (POP!)
They had such a lovely time. They had tea and scones with jam and cream. How delicious!
Then it was time for Mr Bouncy to go home. So they opened the door (POP!) and came out.
Mr Boppy waved as Mr Bouncy went up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill, up the hill and down the hill until he came to his house.
Then each of them opened their doors (POP! POP!) and went into their houses and closed their doors. (POP! POP!)
And that’s the story of Mr Bouncy and Mr Boppy.
I hope you had a ball, or should that be a “balloon” with those activities. (OK that was a terrible joke, sorry…) If you know of any other fun activities that involve balloons, why not leave a comment for us all?