Kidzworld

straplines

Games

Best balloon birthday party games for kids

by Cara Mullin

15 kids’ party games with balloons.

party-balloons

Kids love balloons and you always have them at a birthday party. Why not use them for some fun kids’ party entertainment?

Here are some ideas on kids’ party games you can play at your child’s birthday party with balloons:

Balloon bop

It’s always the simple games the kids love the most. This has to be the easiest and most loved balloon game for kids.

You will need:

  • 1 balloon per child

How to play:

  1. Each child is given a balloon.
  2. The children need to keep their balloon in the air by bopping it up with their hands.
  3. If the balloon touches the floor, the child is out.
  4. The child who manages to keep a balloon in the air the longest is the winner.

Water balloons

If you have the space and the weather for it, water balloons always go down a treat at a kids’ birthday party.

You will need:

A bag of water balloons

  • Water
  • Time to fill the balloons up with water!

If you are doing a lot of water balloons it may take you a while. We recommend you fill the water balloons the day before the party and store them in a plastic bucket or basin.

How to play:

  1. It is best to hand out the water balloons to each child. Experience has taught me this. The alternative is a bun fight and some kids end up without any water balloons at all.
  2. The kids can either throw the water balloons at each other or at a target you have set up.
  3. The most fun I have seen kids have at a birthday party with water balloons is when they were allowed to throw them at the birthday child’s dad! (or any willing adult, volunteers are rare to find though)
  4. Make sure you warn the moms and dads of your party guests that there will be water balloons at your child’s birthday party so they pack a spare set of clothes or a costume for their child.
  5. It can get messy so allocate a person to clean up the bits of balloon pieces as soon as possible.
  6. If you have small kids at your party make sure they are instructed not to put any of the popped balloon bits in their mouth.

Balloon pop

You will need:

  • Balloons
  • Treats to hide in the balloons

How to play:

  1. Pop a small treat into each balloon.
  2. Blow up the balloons and tie them closed.
  3. During the party give each child a balloon to pop.
  4. See the delight as they retrieve their surprise treat.

An alternative is to have a box of treats or surprises. Write the name of each treat on a piece of paper and pop it in the balloon before you blow it up. Each child will find out what treat they will get when they pop a balloon and the piece of paper enclosed falls out.

Balloon relay race

You will need:

  • A bunch of kids
  • 1 balloon per team

How to play:

Divide the children into teams

Option 1

  1. Split each team in half.
  2. Line the children up in their teams with one half of each team on opposite sides of the “race track”.  (You should have 2 rows of teams.)
  3. Each team member must race across the “race track” with the balloon held between their knees to the next team member waiting in line on the opposite side.
  4. The next team member places the balloon between her knees and runs across the track to the half of the team on the opposite side (the start point).
  5. Repeat until all teams members have had a turn to run (or shuffle is probably a better choice of words here) and then the entire team must sit down to show they have finished.
  6. The first team sitting wins.
  7. If the balloon pops the team member who popped the balloon must blow up a new one before he continues the race.

Option 2

  1. Line up the team members 1 behind the other.
  2. The person first in the line of each team must hold a balloon.
  3. The teams must race each other by passing the balloon from team member to team member down the row alternating the balloon over the head and between the legs.
  4. When the balloon reaches the last team member in the row she must run to the front of the row with the balloon and pass the balloon over her head to the next team member.
  5. Repeat the above until all team members have had a chance to be in the front.
  6. When the balloon reaches the last team member in the row (the child who was the first person to start the race) the team must sit down to show they are finished.
  7. The first team sitting wins.

Balloon target practise

You will need:

  • At least 1 balloon per child
  • A water pistol or a toy gun that shoots out arrows with suckers on the end.
  • Drawing pins

How to play:

  1. Blow up the balloons and fix them to a wall (with prestik) or to a board (with drawing pins).
  2. Let the kids take turns in shooting the balloons either with a water pistol or with the arrow guns. Prestik a drawing pin on to the end of the sucker so that the arrow pops the balloon on contact. Make sure non of the kids stand near the balloons when another child is firing the drawing pin arrow!
  3. The boys will be lining up anxiously for this one!!

Balloon tag

You will need:

  • 1 balloon
  • A bunch of kids

How to play:

  1. Have the children sit in a circle with one child standing on the outside of the circle.
  2. Pass a balloon to one of the children sitting in the circle.
  3. Shout go.
  4. The children sitting in the circle must pass the balloon around as quickly as they can whilst the child on the outside of the circle runs around chasing the balloon.
  5. The aim is to tag a child whilst she is holding the balloon before she passes it on to the next child.
  6. If a child is tagged she has to swop places with the child who tagged her.
  7. Expect lots of shrieks and shouting with this game as the children cheer on the other kids to take the balloon.

Balloon stomp

You will need:

  • A balloon for each child
  • A piece of string

How to play:

  1. Tie a balloon around the ankle of each child willing to play the game.
  2. The aim of the game is to pop the other children’s balloons by standing on them without allowing them to pop yours.

Balloon funny faces

You will need:

  • A balloon for each child
  • Flour
  • A funnel
  • A permanent marker

How to play:

  1. Have the children blow up their balloons and then deflate them again.
  2. Using a funnel the children must fill up their balloons with flour.
  3. Tie off the end of each balloon.
  4. Using a permanent marker (you may want to keep them away from any furniture whilst they do this) the children can draw a face on their balloon.
  5. The kids can then have fun distorting and reshaping the face by squishing and squashing the balloon in different ways.

Balloon race

You will need:

  • Balloons
  • Straws
  • String
  • Sellotape

How to play:

  1. Divide the children into teams of two.
  2. Cut a piece of string about 5 metres long for each team.
  3. Thread a straw onto each piece of string.
  4. Tie each piece of string between 2 points.
  5. The pieces of string need to be parallel to each other.
  6. Move the straw to one end of the string which will be the start. All the straws must start on the same end.
  7. Give 1 of the team members a piece of Sellotape and the other a balloon.
  8. When you shout go, the team member with the balloon must inflate the balloon but not tie the end off.
  9. Keeping the balloon end closed (still inflated) with her thumb and finger, she must hold it underneath the straw that has been threaded on to the string.
  10. The other team member must stick the straw onto the balloon by placing the Sellotape over the straw and across the balloon.
  11. As soon as the balloon is stuck onto the straw, the team member hold the balloon closed must release the balloon so that the air shoots out and the balloon races along the string to the end.
  12. The team whose balloon reaches the end first is the winner.

Balloon sandwich race

You will need:

  • Balloons
  • Teams of children divided into 2 per team

How to play:

  1. Give each team a balloon and line up the teams at the start with a balloon sandwiched between the 2 team members. (Either sandwiched between their chests – face to face, or between their backs)
  2. The teams have to race each other to the finish with dropping the balloon.
  3. If a team drops their balloon they will have to go back to the start and begin again.
  4. The first team to reach the finish line with the balloon safely sandwiched between the team members wins.

Capture the balloon

This is a balloon version of capture the flag.

You will need:

  • 6 or more players
  • 2 balloons

How to play:

  1. Divide the children into 2 teams.
  2. Within each team you need to allocate attackers and defenders.
  3. Assign the teams to different "territories" where they are unable to see each other.
  4. Ensure you have clearly defined "territories".
  5. The teams must hide their balloons from each other.
  6. The aim of the game is to locate and capture the opposing teams balloon without being tagged by one their team members and to return back to your team's territory.
  7. If you are tagged by an opposite team member, you are out the game.
  8. If all your team members are tagged then your team loses.
  9. If you capture the opposite teams balloon and return safely to your territory then your team wins.
  10. If the opposite team captures your balloon and you also capture theirs, then the first team member back safely with the balloon wins.

Sink the balloon

You will need:

  • Helium balloons
  • Silly string

How to play:

  1. The children must spray the helium balloon with silly string until it sinks to the floor from the weight of the silly string.

Balloon coconut shy

You will need:

  • Balloons
  • Empty 500ml yoghurt containers or tins or similar sized container (washed)
  • A foam ball or ping pong ball

How to play:

  1. Line up the yoghurt containers on a flat surface (preferably on a table or at table level).
  2. Gently place an inflated balloon so that it is balanced on top of the yoghurt container or tin.
  3. Let the kids knock the balloons off with the foam or ping pong ball.
  4. You could even hide a treat inside the yoghurt container for the child to collect every time he or she knocks the balloon off. I love having the kids work for their treats rather than just handing them out!

Inflate a balloon

You will need:

  • Balloons
  • Empty soda or water bottles
  • Bicarbonate of soda
  • Vinegar
  • Funnel

Method:

  1. Divide the children up into teams of 2 members each.
  2. The teams can race to inflate their balloon first.
  3. Using the funnel 1 team member must pour a half cup of vinegar into the bottle.
  4. The 2nd team member must inflate the balloon to stretch it out and then deflate again, after which 2 tsps of the bicarb must be inserted into the balloon using a funnel.
  5. Without allowing any bicarb to fall out the team member must carefully attach the mouth of the balloon over the opening of the bottle whilst the other team member holds the bottle.
  6. The team member must then lift up the balloon to empty the bicarb into the bottle to mix with the vinegar.
  7. The mixture will begin to foam as the carbon dioxide is released and the balloon will inflate.
  8. The science behind it: When you mix together vinegar and bicarbonate of soda, a gas known as gas carbon dioxide is released. The gas needs to expand so it fills up the balloon.

Balloon hullabaloo

You will need:

  • Balloons
  • Kids with a strong set of lungs and insensitive ear drums
  • Ear plugs for the adults (recommended but not compulsory)

 How to play:

  1. Hand out a balloon to each child.
  2. Have them all inflate their balloons and stand in a room together holding the balloon ends closed with the balloon still inflated.
  3. Instruct them that you will shout “1, 2, 3 launch!”
  4. When they hear the word “launch” they should let their balloon go.
  5. Now you know why it’s called balloon hullabaloo and the adults may opt to wear earplugs!
  6. No doubt they will want to do this one a few times over!!
  7. And just because you are an adult and you want to look cool in front of the kids…

Show them this balloon trick just for fun:

You will need:

  • A balloon
  • A pin
  • Sellotape

Method:

  1. Blow up the balloon.
  2. Tie off the end.
  3. Stick a piece of Sellotape onto the balloon.
  4. Ask the kids to watch as you insert the pin into the balloon through the Sellotape.
  5. The balloon should not pop or deflate provided the pin remains in place blocking the hole.

Note:

Some kids are scared of balloons especially when they pop. Explain each game to the children in advance so they have an opportunity to opt out if they don't feel comfortable being near the balloons. Make sure younger children are instructed not to put the remnants of broken balloon bits into their mouths. It's always best to pick up the broken bits of balloons as soon as possible.

About the author:
Cara Mullin, is the founder and owner of www.kidzworld.co.za, an online resource directory and ezine for parents. She has two creative, spirited kids plus a bunch of pets that keep her on her toes and constantly require food and attention! Her cat Sophie is the most demanding of the lot!

Copyright © 2014 Kidzworld. All Rights Reserved.
You are here: Home Activities Games Party Best balloon birthday party games for kids