Recently we made Balloon Powered Lego Cars, (which my boys just fell about laughing hysterically over every time they zoomed across the room, I will post about that another time), and because they enjoyed that activity so much, I decided to think up something else we could utilise the same principle with, and in to my head popped Balloon Rocket Ships!
The best part was that all the materials we needed for this were all easily on hand at home, which made it such an easy activity to create.
I found some fabulous, bright, multi-coloured wool that we had on hand, then tied it on to a door handle, then threaded on the drinking straw to the other end of the wool, then attached the other end of the wool to our stair railing (you could use a chair or another door handle or anything else you could find), so that the wool was very taut. You will need a nice, easy straight stretch of clear room for the string to go across so that the balloon’s path will not be impeded.
I then cut a 10 cm piece of my packing tape to have it ready to pick up easily with one hand in a moment, then I inflated a balloon and pinched the end tightly so that the air would not escape, and using my packing tape piece, I stuck the balloon to the drinking straw which was threaded on to the wool. The balloon should now be able to slide along the wool quickly across to the other end of the wool, once we let go of the end of the balloon.
Work out in which direction your balloon will be propelled once you let go of the end of the balloon and make sure that you are the right end of your piece of string. For example if the end where your balloon’s air will escape is on the left side, then your balloon will propel to the right so you will need to be on the furthermost left side of the length of wool, so just take the straw with the balloon attached along the string to the correct end. Trial and error will help you work that out if how I explained it didn’t make sense! Hopefully, you will understand what I mean though!
Then just let go!!!
It was really hard to get an action shot of it in action as they were propelled so quickly!
I would have preferred to have decorated the balloon and make it look more like a rocket ship with a nose cone, wings, etc, but any excess weight may affect the effectiveness of the air power so I left it, but if you had someone holding the end of the balloon to keep the air inside and someone to draw with permanent marker on the balloon, you could decorate it that way! It would be pretty tricky to draw on the balloon while still holding the other end of it to keep the air inside, but if you are dextrous enough to do that, then even better, decorate away!
My boys loved it and it was such a cheap, easy, but super fun activity to set up and play with!
Trust me, all the little giggles from your babies are so worth that little bit of effort to set it up!