Activity Course with Balloons


Every child I know has a fascination with balloons.
At every birthday party, every kid wants to take one home.
They are usually the highlight of the party… [unless you have one of these at your party.]

So this week I thought: Why do the balloons only come out at birthday parties?

They bring lots of entertainment in just being balloons.
But there’s so much more you can do with them!
[Check out the previous post: Balloon Badminton.]

I asked Henry what he wanted to do today.
As usual, his answer was to build a road with his mat.
[This has been a daily request, and almost a daily activity since we started using our ABC Mat for a road. Check out this post and this post to see what fun can be done with your ABC Mat].

I wanted him to be more active today and I’ve been wanting to build him an activity course for awhile now.

[check out the activity course by Messy Kids that I featured on last week's High Five!]

So we compromised.
An activity course built with our ABC Mat!
And balloons!

We built the road of the activity course with the ABC Mat.
To extend our course, we didn’t connect them all.
Make sure they’re close enough to jump from one to the other!

We used our large mat squares as our activity spots.


3 rules :

  1. Stay on the mat at all times. [This was not adhered to, but made it fun to try]
  2. Transfer the balloons from the beginning of the course to the end.
  3. Do the activities on the course.

Activity #1:

Hit 3 hanging balloons.
[Henry liked to use the balloon as his hitting device.]


Activity #2:
Jump 3 times!
[Henry has just learned to jump and actually clear the ground- it may be only an inch or two - so this was great practice.]


Activity #3:
Spin 3 times!


Activity #4:
The Tunnel
[Henry experimented with pushing, kicking and hauling the balloons throughout the activity course.]

The course ended with Henry putting each balloon into his barn.

Henry also tried taking more than one balloon at a time.

Was it easier? faster?
Henry tried it to find out.

He quickly found that it was too hard to hold onto more than one balloon at a time.

Henry also experimented with hauling the balloon in his dump truck and pushing it with his blue tractor. His dump truck made it through the course time after time. Proving very easy to haul the balloon.

However, Henry found the balloon had a hard time staying in front of the blue tractor to be pushed. It only made it through the first half of the course.

There were 7 balloons to be transferred to the barn.
Henry hauled 3 balloons in his dump truck.
Pushed 1 balloon with the tractor half way through the course, finished with carrying it himself.
Kicked 1 balloon.
And carried 1 balloon through the entire course.
Blue dog even tagged along did the course once.


The tunnel was a favorite at first.
But it quickly turned into a ‘let me try this’ activity.
The experiments were much more fun.

Henry’s mind thinking hard trying to figure out the best and easiest way to accomplish a task.

Problem solving at its best. And burning off a lot of energy in the meantime.

From our partners



  1. Chandra Chinnis says

    Hey Jamie, I wanted to tell you that I finally got the subway arts framed and will posting pics of the.

  2. Alicia Stucky says

    Oh my gosh, my sons a nut for balloons. We did something similar to the mat jump when we were introducing our vowels. We set up AEIO and U from one end of my bedroom to the other and we just jumped along, singing their names as we went. I wasn't sure if he'd be into the game, but he LOVED it.

  3. Jessica says

    What a fun obstacle course! I wish I'd have thought of this during the winter when I was racking my brain for ways to burn off energy indoors. We will have to add this to our activity list. Thanks for sharing!

  4. ArtsyNina says

    The simplest objects make the best toys :) My 2yo LOVES balloons. I'll have to try an activity course!

    stopping by from m3lb friday link party!

  5. Nina says

    great idea. my son loves balloons…I pick up packs for cheap at walmart after holidays and usually have some in the car and about the house for when we are bored and I want the tv off! one thing we also do – keep it up in the air (though a 3 year old doesn't always get this concept), kick it around the yard and box with it, as long as we don't hit faces. we also play a game where we each hold it and one sits with our arms out and the one holding it switshes it through the other's arms as fast as they can and the other tries to clap and catch it between their hands. even tough for mommas! here's a pic from him trying –

  6. Melissa says

    I think I will have to snag some of your awesome ideas! We love balloon fun too! For birthday parties, we put a piece of candy in the balloon. Then blow it up and let the kids bounce in them and pop them.

  7. Mommy Ramblings says

    Just found your blog. I am a new subscriber. My little ones love balloons and we have them around all the time. If you have a chance visit me at my blog, "Mommy Ramblings" Thanks.

  8. says

    This is so neat and looked like so much fun. We will have to try this soon. I can't wait now.

  9. teachmama says

    love, love, love how much fun you made this activity! so cute, so exciting, and so inspiring!!

    thanks for linking back to new for us friday–and I'm betting that you will get a lot of other mama's moving with their kiddos!!

  10. Jodie says

    This looks so fun! Now I am kicking myself for popping all the balloons last night that were left over from our most recent bday party, they just weren't getting played with anymore. But you are right, who needs to save balloons for birthdays :)

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