Friday, February 22, 2013

How to tie balloons

Materials: a balloon; an air pump and scissors.

Any balloon has a mouth and a flat tail (Pic 1).

The mouth is the opening at one end of the balloon. The nozzle is the technical term for the mouth. The rest of the balloon is the flat tail. You don’t need a whole balloon to make a toy. Lets make a bullet. Fold the balloon in half (Pic 2).

Cut the balloon on two parts (Pic 3 and 4).

Take the part that has two open ends. You will make a knot at the end of the balloon. Hold the balloon about two inches from the end between your thumb and the index finger of the left hand. Your left palm is facing you (Pic 5).

Grab the short end of the balloon with your right thumb and index finger and stretch it (Pic 6).

Bring the stretched end of the balloon around your left hand fingers (Pic 7).

Hold the stretched end of the balloon in your right hand and grab the free long end of the balloon with free fingers of your right hand. You have made a loop around your fingers (Pic 8).

Push the short end of the balloon with your right fingers through the loop (Pic 9).

You should hold the loop on your right fingers. Move your left hand out of the loop (Pic 10).

Pull the short end of the balloon with your left hand tying off the knot (Pic 11 and 12).

You have made the knot (Pic 13).

You may not use your mouth to inflate the balloon. You have to use the air pump. Take the pump in your right hand (if you’re right handed) and hold the balloon in your left hand (Pic 14).

Pull the nozzle (mouth) of the balloon on the tip of the pump as far as you can (Pic 15).

You will use this part of the balloon to make the knot. Hold the balloon and the tip of the pump in your left hand. Don’t block the airway from the pump to the balloon. Inflate the balloon pumping the air with your right hand. Squeeze the balloon right on the top of the pump. Block the airway.  Don’t let the air escape from the balloon (Pic 16).

Remove the pump and put it away (Pic 17).

Hold the balloon in your left hand (Pic 18).

Stretch the nozzle of the balloon with your right hand (Pic 19).

Wrap the stretched part (nozzle) around your left index finger and middle finger to make the loop (Pic 20). If you don’t have enough of the nozzle to make the knot, you should release some air from the balloon to make the additional space.

Push the nozzle through the loop with you right fingers (Pic 21).

Move your left hand out of the loop (Pic 22).

Pull the nozzle of the balloon through the loop with your left hand tying the knot (Pic 23).

Congratulations, you have made the bullet (Pic 24).

Hold the bullet in your left hand. Put the index finger of the right hand at any end of the bullet (Pic 25).

Push the index finger inside of the bubble (Pic 26). You may hold the bullet in this position by holding it in your left hand (Pic 26).

Or hold the bullet between fingers of your right hand (Pic 27).

Aim the bullet at the target and release the bullet. The bullet will spring from your finger and fly at the target. Play the sharpshooter game or see how far your bullet can fly. It’s a great indoor game for any number of players of any ages. You may use a piece of the balloon to make the bullet of any size (Pic 27 and 28).

Or use the whole balloon to make a stick (Pic 29).

I use the bullet for repairing a broken balloon sculpture or to make eyes for the sculpture. You may use the stick for different purposes. It’s a simple sword. You may put many different animal sculptures on the stick. It’s a perfect toy by itself. Just try to throw the stick in the air as far as you can. It flies like a rocket! You may make a target by making a loop from another stick. Let the players throw the stick at the target. Try to bend the stick and then throw it. You will get an amusing result. The stick spins in the air. You may make a very nice entrance at any party by bringing a couple of inflated sticks and throwing them into the crowd. It creates a lot of fun. Have fun and happy twisting :)
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