Build a Balloon...Out of Paper! Activity

3.4 based on 22 ratings
Updated on Oct 15, 2012

It is a powerful feeling to manipulate the world with one's hands to create something out of seemingly nothing. The traditional art of Japanese origami does just that! Combining different folding techniques results in incredibly intricate creations. Introduce your child to this ancient method of paper folding, and prepare to be amazed by the results.

Watch your child's wonder as she creates a three-dimensional balloon using only one piece of paper! The best part is, she gets to blow it up, just like a real balloon. This inexpensive project will engage your child’s fine motor skills, attention to detail, and hand-eye coordination. 

What You Need:

  • Square piece of origami paper, in any color or pattern
  • Water (optional)

What You Do:

Instruct your child in the following steps:

  1. Fold the sheet of paper in half, into a rectangle.
  2. Fold it again into a square.
  3. Turn the square so that the fold is on the left (like a book), and slide your index finger into the flap into the uppermost corner of the fold. Press the flap down to create a triangle.

  1. Turn the paper over and repeat.
  2. Fold the bottom corners of the triangle up to the top, aligning each side with the center crease.

  1. Turn the paper over and repeat, creating a diamond.
  2. Fold the left and right corners in, so that the points are touching at the center crease.

  1. Turn the paper over and repeat. You should now have a shape with six sides.
  2. Fold the top left and right corners down and tuck them into the small pockets created in the previous step.

  1. Turn the paper over and repeat.
  2.  Now for the fun part! You are ready to blow air into the small hole at the bottom. It may take several tries to fully blow up the balloon.

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