12. Balloon keepy-uppy

This is a game we played tonight (as I write). The game couldn’t be simpler. The kids in particular loved this one. The title is fairly self-explanatory. The balloon we used was larger than normal, one of the type that can be banged against an elastic leash and if sold with such a leash. But any balloon will do.

The way we played this was sitting in four armchairs and simply dinking the balloon to each other. By dinking I mean flicking the balloon to another player or up in the air to keep it in play.  The object of the game is to stop the balloon from touching the ground.

We start with a rule that one person can only dink the balloon up in the air five times in a row. Any number of dinks up to five is allowed before passing it to another person. One person is responsible for counting the number of dinks.

The method led to 50 dinks in succession. The game is then to match or exceed your own record, but with the rule that the same person can only dink four times in a row on the next round, then three two and one.

It is possible allow one child to be mobile, ie stand up and move around, but if everyone does this the game quickly becomes chaotic.

Thats it! Couldn’t be simpler. A great game for younger children -in our household the children enjoyed this game so much they continued to play after the adults had lost patience.

I particularly liked this game as several people are involved, it is co-operative rather than competitive and is a shared activity which is the whole point of family time- just doing something together. What matters is that you have an enjoyable time. Whilst interacting, but not necessarily talking.