Monday, June 23, 2008

Theme of the Week Challenge

I know everyone shies away from balloons these days given the risk of inhalation, but I just can't eliminate them from our play curriculum. It's too bad they get a bad name when usually all it takes is some correct parental supervision to make them a safe toy. And there are so many fun things to do with balloons! My son begs for a new balloon a few times a week, so we have plenty of chances to try out new activities.

Which brings me to the Theme of the Week: Balloons. I challenge you this week to share some kind of balloon activity you have heard about, tried, or created on your own. As promised I have a giveaway for your efforts, a Balloon book. I'll even let you choose:

Option 1: Balloons, Balloons, Balloons by Dee Lillegard
Option 2: Emily's Balloon by Komako Sakai
Option 3: Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm by Jerdine Nolen

Unfortunately, I haven't yet read any of them, but they all seem like delightful reads for young children. Maybe the winner can give us a review of the chosen book !

To make it even easier for you I have added a shiny new widget for our LLL blog, meet Mister Linky! Now you can post all about your activities on your own blog and simply enter the link to that post into the box below with your name. Of course you are welcome to continue leaving our ideas in a comment or post if you don't have a blog or if your blog is private. I'm going to say one entry per person no matter how many ideas you submit and no matter what method (commenting, posting, or using Mister Linky). ***I forgot to mention the contest closes at midnight Pacific Time on Sunday, or rather that would be Monday I guess. I'll tell you the winner in next week's Theme of the Week post.***

To get you started, you can check out another blog of mine, World Preschool Mom, it is the first in the Linky list below. I've loaded up a post with a bunch of lovely balloon ideas we have both borrowed and created.


Tricia said...

My 8 month old giggles every time I use our punch baloon. She thinks it is the funniest thing. She likes to try too but usually ends up chewing on the rubber-band part.
I bet balloons would be fun in a pool.

Desta said...

There's a little-known toy from the late 80's called the Balzac Balloon Ball. It's basically a cloth sack (think of a beach ball made out of cloth) with a slit on one end. You stick the uninflated balloon in and then blow it up. The cloth makes it nearly indestructible and removes choking hazards.

Plus you can put fun things in the balloon before you blow it up - like rice, coins, water - and see the different effects it has.

I don't know how I got one - they really were not popular - but it resurfaced in our recent move and the Z-girl loves it and plays with it just like a regular ball. I'd like to attempt making a pattern so I can make cute ones to give away for other balloon enthusiasts.

Brooke said...

My kids love to play volleyball with a balloon. I know that it's simple, but they could hit a balloon all day! We also love to write special things in helium balloons and let them go.

mommomto2pumpkins said...

ballon paddleball: we got it fomr the toddler busy book: you make a paddle by stapling a heavy duty paper plate to a paint stick ( for each player) then you blow up a ballon and hit it back and forth to each other or you can just try to keep it going on your own paddle for 1 person play!

btw: balloon farm is the cutest book! we check it out at the library every chance we get!

Tracey said...

A recent balloon idea my 7 year old came up with was "sticking" balloons to the ceiling using static electricity. Some even stayed up over night. He rubbed the balloons on different surfaces to see if different substances created enough "sticking power" to keep the balloons up on the ceiling. Also fun is using a comb charged with static electricity to move a balloon without touching it. And of course, make your hair stick up using a balloon and static electricity! We also like to pass the balloon around seeing how high we can count (or saying the alphabet) before it hits the ground. (Change it up by naming what body part you are allowed to use to hit the balloon.) When my kids were babies and just laying around, it was fun to attach a helium balloon to one ankle and watch them figure out how to get it to move. After a while, they would figure out which leg it was attached to and then they would just move that leg. Once they had figured that out, I'd switch which leg it was attached to so they would have to figure out how to get the balloon to move again. (Thanks to one of my awesome professor's at UC DAVIS for that idea!) My daughters love the movie Princess Diaries, and they want to make art like the mom and daughter in the movie. In the movie, they attached paint filled balloons to a large canvas and threw darts at them popping the balloons and sending paint dripping and spatting all over! We plan to do that on a smaller scale some time too:)