Wondering what to do with your used Bunch O Balloons? Try this fun recycled materials art project for toddlers, using recycled Bunch O Balloons fast fillers. It’s an ecofriendly way to prolong the life of this summer staple (and work your kids’ creativity in the process!)
If you ask my kids, they’ll tell you all about how much they LOVE summer. There are block parties, and beach days, and adventures. There are museum visits and swim lessons and EPIC water balloon fights with the neighbors.
But what they always seem to forget is that summer is also filled with long, lazy days that sometimes feel wayyyy too long. This is particularly felt on days following particularly exciting events.
Take one day last summer, for example. The day before had been EXTRA fun and full of impromptu play, filling up a Bunch O Balloons kit and hosting a big water balloon fight, and hopping in and out of the neighbor’s pool. So when I told them that today was going to be a more low-key, stay at home day, they did exactly what you might expect.
They lost their minds.
So I did what any mother who values her sanity would do. I scrambled to find something- anything- to stop the kids’ incessant whining. The used Bunch O Balloons were the first things that caught my eye, and I decided to turn them into something new.
And in the process, a new summertime art project for preschoolers was created.
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Setting Up Recycled Materials Art Projects
My older daughter isn’t always a fan of art projects. As soon as she sees a paint brush coming her way, she starts to roll her eyes. So in order to get her to be creative, I have to be creative first.
I have found that the best way to lure her into an art project is to have it be novel, different, or strange in some way,. It has to pique her interest enough to help her overcome her hesitation.
One of my favorite ways to do this is by incorporating recycled materials into our art projects. Before we throw away pretty much anything in my house, I first ask myself one simple question: is there a way for my kids to make art with this?
It’s why so many of our projects feature bubble wrap or other unusual materials, and it’s why I’ll build a whole wall of recycled materials for my kids to paint. Recycled materials art projects for toddlers (or kids of any age, really) are a great way to take away kids’ fear about creating something perfect, and to focus on the process of making art.
Can You Recycle Bunch O Balloons?
Have you used a pack of Bunch O Balloons recently? They truly are the easiest way to blow up a mess of water balloons all at once, and my kids love to watch them grow. We love to watch them pop off their plastic tubes, and we love tossing them even more.
But even a Bunch O Balloons only lasts so long, and then you’re left with a sad looking tube. My kids want to use those tubes to make another set of balloons. And when that doesn’t work, they start to get upset, and we’re left with a few wimpy looking pieces of plastic.
We were recycling them according to Bunch O Balloons guidelines (read all about their Bunch O Balloons recycling program– you can even recycle the balloon pieces!) but then one day it occurred to me- those spindly little tubes actually look a lot like paintbrushes. And in this house, if we can make art with something, we do.
Step One: Set Up Your Bunch O Balloons Art Project
First up, you’re going to want to prep your Bunch O Balloons hose attachment. Make sure that all rubberbands and balloons are off of the plastic balloon filler.
Next up, you’re going to want to set up some paint for your child to use. I used to use take and toss bowls, but these days I’m putting the paints in the lid instead. It’s a smaller container, which means you don’t end up with as much wasted space.
You’ll need to decide how you want to present the project. I chose to put the paint next to the used Bunch a Balloons filler, but you could also put a few dollops of paint directly on the paper.
Step Two: Bunch O Balloons Recycled Materials Art Project
There are a couple of different ways that kids can paint using their Bunch O Balloons; you can choose to demonstrate for them if you want, but I prefer to let them figure it out on their own.
The Bunch O Balloons looked enough to like a paintbrush that Abram wasted no time using it like one. He started out dipping it like a brush in the paint and using it to make strokes across the paper.
He really liked how the Bunch O Balloons differed from a regular paintbrush, making lots of lines with a single stroke.
Step Three: Change Up Your Method
It wasn’t long before Abe wanted to try something new. I think the used Bunch O Balloons filler looked enough like a straw that he made a connection to this blow art activity.
It took him several tries to be successful, but eventually he was able to move some paint using the Bunch O Balloons like a straw.
And if nothing else, it kept him engaged in the activity for a bit longer. And in my book, that’s a win!
Step Four: Rinse and Recycle Used Bunch O Balloons
The best part of this activity is that you can still recycle Bunch O Ballons when you’re done. According to the Bunch O Balloons website, both the water balloon remnants and the fast-filler are recyclable.
Fill a box with the leftover pieces, print a shipping label, and send your Bunch O Balloons off to be made into brand new toys.
This recycled materials art project for toddlers and preschoolers is a great way to talk to your kids about reusing materials. They’ll make a gorgeous little process based summer art project, and at the end, you’ll still be able to responsibly recycle your used plastic.
It’s a fantastic way to extend the life of your Bunch O Balloons and entertain your antsy kids in the process.
Have you ever used unconventional materials in your kids’ art projects? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!
Looking for more art projects to do with your kids? Head here next-
- Shaving Cream Marbled Print Art
- Kids Get Creative with Process Art for Toddlers
- Raised Salt Watercolor Paintings