Rocket Balloon Races, Two Ways

Kids love things that go vroom, especially when they’ve masterminded the vehicles themselves. After all, what’s more fun than building a car then racing it against your friends, or just challenging yourself to keep creating a better, faster car?

Bring the excitement of this activity up a notch with another thing that kids universally love: balloons. The next time boredom strikes, round up some balloons, straws, and LEGOs. You’ll have not one, but two ingenious ways to keep the kids busy for hours.

Materials:

  • Balloons
  • Straws
  • Tape
  • String
  • LEGOs
  • Bag clips

In order to make a balloon powered car, your child will first need to build the car. We chose LEGOs because they’re lightweight and can be used in lots of ways but the sky’s the limit when it comes to possible building materials. The key is to add a small tunnel somewhere in order to slide the end of the balloon through.

Once the car is built, insert the end of the balloon through the tunnel and blow it up. Then use a bag clip to keep the balloon sealed until you’re ready to race.

Remove the bag clip, let the air out of the balloon, and watch the force propel the car forward.

Encourage your kids to play scientist by exploring the effects of different sized balloons, wheels and cars.

When everyone’s finally tired of the cars, it’s time to break out the straws and string to extend this activity even further. Inflate the balloon, clip it closed, and tape the straw to the balloon.


Next tie one end of the string to a high spot and thread it through the straw. Hold up the end of the string with one hand and the balloon in the other.


Now all that’s left to do is let go and watch the rockets fly.

Photo credits: Stephanie Morgan

Related Articles

Self-Powered Car Science Projects
Simple Machines for Preschoolers to Make
Easy Inventions for Science Projects
Classic Science at Home: Elephant Toothpaste
Fun Games & Activities for Field Day
Toy Car Experiments
How to Make a Car for a School Project
Jet Propulsion Science Projects
Rocket School Projects
How to Make a Balloon Fly in a Straight Line
Heat Conduction Experiments for Kids
How to Blow Up a Balloon With Vinegar and Baking Soda...
How to Mix Vinegar & Baking Soda in a Bottle Rocket
Science Project on Gravity and Motion for Third Graders
Newton's Laws of Motion for Kids
Science Transportation Activities for Preschoolers
Why Does Soda Explode in Freezers?
Fun Exploding Science Experiments
What Experiments Can Be Done to Amplify Sound?
How to Make an Elevator for a Science Fair Project

Dont Go!

We Have More Great Sciencing Articles!