You'll just have to hear the sound for yourself to understand why we've nicknamed this activity, "The World's Most Annoying Science Experiment." It's become a Halloween favorite - just like that motorcycle dude at the circus. Everyone's reaction is the same, "That's amazing!"
Invite one hundred of your favorite friends to do the activity because we're sending you a big bag filled with 100 clear latex balloons and 100 hex nuts. Ages 6 and up.
- 100 clear, latex balloons
- 100 zinc hex nuts
- Activity guide
How does it work?No, it’s not a mistake. Clear balloons belong in the sound section because of an amazing discovery we made. Normally, we would tell you to put a penny inside the latex balloon and blow it up. Hold the balloon with both hands and make a swirling motion. Thanks to the laws of inertia and some centripetal motion, the penny flips up on its edge and spins around the inside of the balloon. However, try substituting one of our hex nuts for the penny and you get a screaming balloon! The unique shape of the hex nut vibrates the walls of the balloon to produce a wonderfully annoying sound. Just imagine the fun you’ll have with a classroom full of screaming balloons.
Patti Kramer - June 6, 2011
My 4th grade students had a great time with the balloons. For our final week of school we took several different activities outside. The students were able to play with the balloons and then apply what was learned through out the year.
Great fun for Halloween science
Kristie Jones - September 29, 2010
My students and I love this activity on Halloween. Be sure to warn students not to blow the balloons up too much - they last longer if they are not too thin. Be prepared to tie most of the balloons if your student are fourth grade or younger.
Screaming Balloons - Cheap, addictive, fun!
Carolyn Florio - September 2, 2010
Screaming balloons have a been a hit at our summer VBS, science birthday parties, and in our house. The noise they make is so unexpected and addictive. Even the youngest children get the hang of it after a few tries - since they have such little hands, they can not 'palm' the balloon Michael Jordan style, but they still manage to make the sound holding on with two hands. Yes, the balloons do pop if filled too large, so I suggest no larger than a cantaloupe. A hand pump, like those used for exercise balls, is the best way to go for a large group. I had a hard time finding clear balloons at our local party supply stores, but found it was better to have different colors for a large group - everyone knew which balloon was theirs. I used a white one for the demo with the penny. It is great to try different circular items - dimes make a cool sound and marbles are fun, too. It is fun to throw the weighted balloon in the air and watch the randomness of the descent.
Was fun to demo - they pop easy like regular balloons outdoors.
Mark Derail - May 31, 2010
At our fundraiser, the most fun I had was sneaking up on adults, make the noise with the balloon, and have people cringe thinking the World's Largest Mosquito had taken an interest in them.