To play balloon pop, you will need the following:
1)Multi-colored balloons (at least two or three for every child, with one color designated for children under three years of age, if any)
2)A large supply of small candies or toys. Keep in mind when choosing these items that hard candies and very small toys can be dangerous for children under three, as they pose a choking hazard. If you have a mixed age group, you can set aside some toddler-safe candies and toys for the littlest ones.
4)Prizes for the winners. These could be anything from toys, to books, to puzzles, or simply hand-decorated paper cups with extra things from the goody bag stash.
Put a toy or a candy in each balloon. The toys for the smaller children should go into the balloons with the previously designated color. Blow up and tie off each balloon. Have the birthday child help you decorate them with glitter and glue or stickers of his or her choosing.
Now the fun begins. When it’s time to play, the children should be divided into groups of no more than five, to ensure that everyone gets at least one turn. Each group should form a line. A marker should be placed evenly a few feet in front of each line. Every child is then given a balloon. The timer is set for ten minutes. When the time-keeper says “Go!” the first child in each line rushes to the marker and stomps, sits, or jumps on his balloon to make it pop. Once the balloon breaks, the child takes his prize and runs back to his team. He taps the next person and then goes to the back of the line. The next person goes to the marker with their balloon, and so on and so forth.
When the ten minutes is up, any child who has not yet had one turn should be allowed to go. Then the items are counted, and whichever team has the most wins the prizes. Then if prizes and balloons permit, play balloon pop again!
Feel free to get creative when you play balloon pop, adding your own special twist. Put nickels or arcade tokens in the balloons instead of toys or candy, or place little notes inside the balloons with silly things the children must do before they can run back to their team (jump like a kangaroo, or make a fish face). For refreshing summer fun, let the children know in the invitation that they should bring their bathing suits, and fill the balloons with water instead of air. Whatever you do, this game is sure to be a hit. Just remember to carefully pick up all of the pieces of the broken balloons, as these can also pose choking hazards to small children. Have fun!