Toddler programs

Balloons, Balloons, Balloons

Books To Share

  • The Blue Balloon by Mick Inkpen.
  • Little Polar Bear and the Big Balloon by Hans DeBeer.
  • Mouton's Impossible Dream by Anik McGrory.
  • A Rainbow Balloon by Ann Lenssen.

Books To Show

  • Altoona Baboona by Janie Bynum.
  • The Amazing Air Balloon by Jean Van Leeuwen.
  • The Balloon Sailors by Diane Swanson.
  • Can You See the Red Balloon? by Stella Blackstone.
  • Molto's Dream by Raoul Krischanitz.

Bulletin Board

Beautiful Balloons

Hot air balloons come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Look for pictures of hot air balloons and cut them out or copy them for your Bulletin Board. Get ideas from the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta and their online gallery of photographs.


Cut balloon shapes or use a die-cut machine. Tape a piece of curling ribbon to the bottom of the balloon.




This is the way we blow our balloon. (pretend to blow up a balloon)

We blow! (hold your hands out as the balloon gets bigger)

And blow! (hold hands farther apart)

And blow! (hold hands even farther apart)

And blow! (spread hands out really big)

This is the way we break our balloon.

POP! (clap your hands loudly)


  • "Balloon" by Barbara Ireson in First Verses: Finger Rhymes, Action
  • Rhymes, Chanting Rhymes, Counting Rhymes compiled by John Foster.
  • “The Balloon Man” by Dorothy Aldix in Tomie dePaola’s Book of Poems.


My Balloons Are Magic


My balloons are magic,

It's not trick.

Mix red with yellow and watch the show.

You'll quickly see the orange glow.

Mix red with blue and what do I get?

A pretty shade of violet!

Put blue with yellow and what will you see?

A shade of green that's fit for a queen.


Library Balloons

(Author unknown. Sing to the tune of "The Mulberry Bush.")

This is the way we blow up the balloon (act like you are blowing up a balloon)

Blow up the balloon

Blow up the balloon

This is the way we blow up the balloon

At the Library.

This is the way we bounce the balloon. (pretend to bounce a balloon in the air)

Bounce the balloon

Bounce the balloon.

This is the way we bounce the balloon

At the Library.

This is the way we pop the balloon. (pretend to stick with a pin)

Pop the balloon

Pop the balloon

This is the way we pop the balloon

At the Library. (clap hands loudly)


Sing “Balloon-Alloon-Alloon” in The Giant Book of Children’s Songs.


Hot Air Balloon Hang-up


Use the pattern provided to trace a hot-air balloon for each child onto tag board. Cut out in advance. Give the toddlers crayons and let them color their balloon. Punch a hole in the top and tie a loop of yarn or string so that their balloon can be hung up at home.

Games and Activities

Balloon Toss

Use a punch ball balloon in this activity. Made of latex, punch ball balloons are a little sturdier than regular balloons. Have the children sit in a circle with a parent or adult seated next to the child. Gently toss the balloon back and forth around the circle. Young children must always be supervised while handling balloons.

Mixed Up Balloons

Cut out balloon shapes from red, blue, and yellow colored cellophane, acetate, or transparency film. Using an overhead projector, project the colors as you mix them while reciting the rhyme, “My Balloons Are Magic” provided in the Rhyme section above. Note: Colored transparency film or acetate sheets are available at many office or art supply stores or photography shops. Sax sells an assortment pack. You can also purchase or recycle acetate report covers, available at office supply stores.

Guest Speakers

Invite a balloon artist to visit and make balloon animals and objects for the children. Remember to be careful with young children and balloons! If you cannot locate a balloon artist, library staff can create simple animals following instructions from the Balloon Twisting web site listed below.

If your community has a hot-air balloon pilot, ask if he or she will bring a balloon to the library. It is fascinating to watch the balloons inflate. Plano is the official Hot Air Balloon Capitol of Texas but Mesquite, Houston, El Paso, Sulphur Springs, and many other communities have ballooning events each year. Many businesses also sponsor balloons and might be willing to collaborate with the library for an event.


Make or purchase plain round sugar cookies. Mix vanilla icing with food coloring and give each child a cookie, a dab of icing in 2-3 colors, and a plastic spoon for spreading. After the children have decorated their "balloons," provide lengths of red or black licorice string to attach to the bottom of the cookie with an extra dab of frosting so it looks like a string. This treat can also be made with rice cakes and cream cheese for a non-sugar snack.

Audio Recordings

  • “The Balloon Song” on Multicultural Children's Songs by Ella Jenkins.
  • “Balloons, Balloons" on Get Ready, Get Set, Sing! by Sarah Barchas.
  • "Up, Up and Away" on Up, Up and Away: The Definitive Collection by The 5th Dimension.


Note: Many videos include several episodes or segments. Show one section as part of your program. For a toddler program, limit the film to less than 10 minutes. Display the other videos for parents and caregivers to check out.

  • “Arthur's Lost Dog” on Arthur’s First Sleepover. (15 minutes)
  • The Red Balloon. (34 minutes)

Web Sites

Balloon Twisting

How Stuff Works

Virtual Hot-Air Balloon Ride

Professional Resources

Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade


Texas Reading Club 2004 Programming Manual / Color Your World...Read!

Published by the Library Development Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Page last modified: June 14, 2011