Here is a silly gross motor activity from Alisha that will have your kids bouncing, jumping, and rolling on balloons!
Which size balloon is easier to pop with your body? That’s the big question that guides this super simple and fun balloon popping experiment for kids.
The set-up for this experiment is just like setting up for a party and you only need two supplies.
- some balloons (affiliate link)
- a permanent marker
Plus some strong lungs to blow up the balloons!
Begin by blowing up the balloons; I used three for the experiment, but you can use as many as you would like.
Just make sure to have them vary in size from small to large.
Then simply write the size on each balloon or number them from smallest to largest. I recommend talking about the sizes, for sequence and comparison practice.
Before the balloon popping fun begins…
I recommend blowing up extra balloons and just letting your kiddos play with them for awhile; as they will probably be more focused to participate in a tad more structured balloon activity after some good old balloon fun.
Once your experiment balloons are ready to go, ask your kiddos the essential question of which size of balloon they feel will be easier to pop.
Then, have them use their body to pop the balloons and test their theory!
My kiddos sat on them, rolled on them, squeezed them with their hands, and tried stomping on them (beware: stomping may cause little ones to slip and fall).
As the balloons began to pop, we took note on which popped first and which size was really hard to pop.
You could even make a chart or graph, for keeping track of the order in which the balloons popped, to incorporate some math skills as well.
Note: if you have multiple kiddos participating in the balloon activity, you could make a small-medium-large set for each of them to find if body weight, height, or body movement affected the results.
Also, if any of your kiddos are sensitive to loud noises, I suggest using some ear protection or turning on some music to make the pop less prominent.
Once all the balloons are popped, have some hands-on fun cleaning up all of the pieces together.
Add in a little learning, too!
Now even though this balloon activity is just plain fun to participate in, there is some real science behind it as well.
When you inflate a balloon, you apply stress or tension to the balloon material as it stretches over the air that you are blowing into it. The more air that is in the balloon, the more it is under tension and therefore easier to pop. When a balloon is smaller or experiencing less tension, the material is stronger and can withstand more external pressure.
If your kiddos are really enjoying some balloon science, here is another great experiment for blowing up a balloon with baking soda and vinegar.
Don’t be surprised if your kiddos want you to blow up more balloons to try this experiment again!